DETROIT – Could the moment Detroit’s fans have been dreading finally be here? Will Friday’s Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals be the last time we see Nicklas Lidstrom skating at Joe Louis Arena?
It's possible, since the Wings are in a 0-3 series hole to the San Jose Sharks, and Lidstrom signed a one-year contract last summer to play in a 19th NHL season in Detroit.
After Thursday’s Red Wings practice, the 41-year-old Lidstrom contemplated his future. But for now, the Wings’ captain and Hockeytown legend wants to focus on the series at hand.
“It’s tough to answer, I hope not,” said Lidstrom, when asked if Friday would be his final game in an illustrious NHL career, which began in 1991. “I want to continue to play in this playoffs and just keep going with this team.
“I’m going to wait until this season is over and make a decision about what I want to do,” he said. “That’s one thing I haven’t put in my mind yet. I’m so focused on playing right now, so that’s something I want to start thinking about when we’re done playing.”
Lidstrom was optimistic about the team’s future, regardless of whether he will be in the lineup next fall.
“Looking at the lineup we have, and looking at the depth that we have and the core group of guys we have that are in their prime right now, I have no doubt they’re going to be a successful team,” Lidstrom said.
Lidstrom is a finalist for the Norris and Lady Byng trophies this season. He has won the Norris, as the league’s best defenseman, six times. He also won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the MVP of the 2002 Stanley Cup playoffs.