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Captain earns 'Hardest Working' award

by Michelle Crechiolo / Detroit Red Wings
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DETROIT – Known for his durability, Nicklas Lidstrom certainly is living up to that billing. Even in the middle of an Olympic-season, the Red Wings’ captain is leading his team in minutes played, averaging more than 25-minutes of ice time.

The veteran defenseman is just one of three players to appear in all 63 games for the Red Wings this season, and leads the team’s blue liners in points, with seven goals and 30 assists. He’s spent all 18 NHL seasons in a Wings’ uniform, and his value to them is priceless.

The six-time Norris Trophy winner doesn’t seem to be showing any wear and tear. He rarely leaves the ice no matter what the situation is, whether it’s full strength, power play, penalty kill, etc.

Although the Wings finished with a 6-9-6 record leading up to the 2010 Winter Olympics, they are still viable competitors for the final Western Conference playoff berth and Lidstrom’s steadiness has been vital to their battle. In the 21 games played in January and February, Lidstrom compiled exactly half of his season total, registering five goals and 13 assists.

Even with injuries to Jonathan Ericsson and Niklas Kronwall, Lidstrom anchored the defense, recording a plus-10 rating and playing steady as ever,
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For his efforts, Lidstrom was selected as the Carharrt Hardest Working Player of the Month by the Red Wings’ coaching staff. He received his award from Carhartt sponsorship and event specialist Sanja Zarubica during a pre-game ceremony prior to the start of Friday’s Wings-Predators game at Joe Louis Arena.

During the regular-season, Carhartt has presented the monthly award to the hardest working Red Wings’ player, along with Carhartt merchandise. The award, in its third season, recognizes the player for his hard work and individual dedication to commitment necessary to excel on the ice. The Red Wings’ coaching staff and front office personnel select the monthly recipients.

Lidstrom is the fourth Wings’defenseman, and the 16th overall recipient, of the award. Forward Pavel Datsyuk has won the award the most, laying claim to it three times. Power forward Johan Franzen has received the award twice with goalies Chris Osgood and Jimmy Howard, forwards Henrik Zetterberg, Valtteri Filppula, Dan Cleary and Marian Hossa, and defensemen Andreas Lilja, Brian Rafalski and Brad Stuart each winning once.

For over 115 years, Carhartt has manufactured premium workwear known for exceptional durability, comfort, quality of construction, and fit that you can feel in the fabrics and see in the performance. Established in 1889, Carhartt is family-owned and operated with over 4,000 employees dedicated to providing Best-in-Class apparel for the active worker.

Carhartt and the Red Wings would like to recognize Nicklas Lidstrom for his outstanding work and success during January/February and wish him continued success throughout the 2009-10 season.

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