Seven Norris Trophies, four Stanley Cups, a World Championship gold medal, 12-time NHL All-Star, and an Olympic gold medal. This is just a portion of the impressive resume Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom built throughout his 20-year career in Detroit.
But his poise, class, and leadership abilities are the reason that despite any team rivalries, NHL fans couldn't help but respect and appreciate him.
As expected, Lidstrom announced his retirement from the league on Thursday morning. In his press conference, he explained he didn't want to lose the level of play he had achieved, and this decision has allowed him to walk away with pride.
Lidstrom and Bobby Orr, who spent his career with the Bruins and Blackhawks, are arguably the two best defensemen of all time. Orr earned eight consecutive Norris Trophies, three consecutive Hart Trophies, and two Stanley Cups. He still holds the NHL record of most hat-tricks for a defensemen, with nine under his belt.
Lidstrom and his family plan to move back to Sweden, but he says he'd like to stay involved with the Red Wings in some capacity.