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Octopus's Garden

"I don't even want to think about it"

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I really hope not. Yes he is getting older, but he's playing just as good as ever. If he wanted to, he could probably play another 2/3 yrs.

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I really hope we don't lose this series but IF we do.....please don't lose it at home. I don't want Nick's final game in a Red Wing uniform to be watching this team get swept out of the playoffs. That would piss me off more than actual loss. He deserves better than that, for all he's done for this team and for the sport.

It sucked when Steve retired but it's REALLY going to suck when Nick finally hangs 'em up. People think the team is playing poorly now......

Even though I'm aware of the fact that Lidstrom has arguably had a greater impact on this teams success - I have to be honest by saying I'll always miss Stevie more than I would Nick.

Yes I think a few of the younger folks on here need to be enlightened on what the Lidstrom-less Wings were like.....not pretty. I don't think it will be quite that bad when he does retire, but I think alot of fans are going to be shocked on how subtly he runs the whole on-ice show. Wings will recover, but it won't be easy or quick....

The Red Wings had a handful of pretty good seasons prior to Nick's arrival - yet we didn't see any recent Cups until he donned the Winged Wheel.

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Yes I think a few of the younger folks on here need to be enlightened on what the Lidstrom-less Wings were like.....not pretty. I don't think it will be quite that bad when he does retire, but I think alot of fans are going to be shocked on how subtly he runs the whole on-ice show. Wings will recover, but it won't be easy or quick....

If Nick retires we will almost surely be a worse team for it.

Bringing in new people is always a little dicey. You never really know how well they'll adapt to the system and the other players. When it's your #1 defenseman and most reliable player, who's also the team captain and long time leader, it's even more of a problem.

I'm not saying we'd miss the playoffs for sure. Or that we'll be terrible. But it's hard to imagine Nick's eventual departure as anything but a bad thing for the team. When Stevie left, the torch had already been passed on to Hank and Pav, and Nick was still the best player in the game. We don't have anyone for Nick to pass the torch to. We don't need a 'generational' talent, but we need someone ready to step into the role. Kronner, Stu, and Rafi aren't, IMO.

Maybe when he does retire we'll get lucky and whatever changes we make to compensate will work out fine. Maybe we'll be even better. But I wouldn't get your hopes too high.

You guys pretty much said exactly everything I could have responded with.

Nick is quietly our most reliable player (and I'll say it again--our best player.) Ken Holland jokes that he's going to announce his retirement right after Lidstrom does. Now, I think we'll still be a good team after Nick hangs 'em up. But, we'll almost certainly not be quite as consistently good.

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Alright, how do I say this without sedning LGW.com into a tizzy. I will premise this by saying Nick Lidstrom is one of my all time favorite Red Wings right behind Stevie, and right up there with Shanny and Konstantinov.

Now. If we lose Nick, add Hudler, Volchenkov (Please god), and another 2.5-3 mil, 40-50 point forward huge is definitely possible, we WILL be a MUCH better team than we were this year. There I said it.

For those of you in this thread that has said Nick is just as good as he ever was, not to be rude, but I have to question if youve really been watching. Dont get me wrong, I want him back. He's probably my favorite Red Wing, but losing a defenseman in decline and replacing him with two solid players does not = the end of the world. Just as one of the posters said, look at the defensive cores around the league. Take Lidstrom away and add a stay at home guy to our core. Are we really that much worse?

Come on guys. If we were losing 36 year old Lidstrom id be :nervous: but not now. And yes, we would be far worse next year if either Datsyuk or Zetterberg were to retire as a opposed to Nick.

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Mike Babcock quotes about Lidstrom. He said these during the 2nd round of the 2008 playoffs. I added the "Well"s just cuz he's Babs and that's how he begins every interview answer. :P

"(Well), I've never coached anybody this good, as consistent, as intuitive, that has as great understanding of the game and is as tuned in to what's going on."

"Well, I think he is (the most valuable player in the league) bar none. The amount of minutes he plays, how plus he is, what he does power play, penalty kill, even strength. To me he's the best player in the world. I say that time and time again. I know I'm a lot better coach when he's in the lineup. He's our leader. He's a quiet man who in my opinion is as good a professional, and I'm talking in any business there is. He's an unbelievable guy, and we're so lucky to have him and fortunate. He, to me right now, even though people talk about Zetterberg and Datsyuk, he's the face of the franchise, and he's the guy who leads the way."

"(Well), to understand how good he is, number one, you gotta understand hockey. You gotta see him on a consistent basis. I never knew he was this good. It's impossible unless you see him everyday. You see how hard he practices, and how professional he is, and how prepared he is and even his disposition. He just makes people better. So when you look at all that, and you get that package, and I don't know how long he's been here 18 years or whatever, however long he's been here, can you imagine having a guy that just comes in and makes everyone around him better for that long? I'm just hoping Kronwall and Rafalski keep improving cause one day when he leaves, there is going to be a huge hole."

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Doom and Gloom... People thought when Yzerman left the wings were done, well we were not. I love lids, I'd take him over almost any player in the NHL. But I think he is done. What happens next you might ask? Simple... the Wings continue forward, acquire new talent and bring up kids that have been developing in the minors.

We will never replace Lids, but other teams have won the cup without him.... so can we.

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anyone believe that he'll return AND accept a huge paycut?? Me thinks Nik is done.

Yes. This guy has more class than all of us on this thread put together. Don't presume he is greedy and self-centered and only wants the money - nothing about his 20 year career ever even hints of that.

This guy has done just as much or more for this franchise as Stevie Y (whom I worship) and done so for many years quietly and behind the scenes, without asking for due credit. We are not dealing with Fedorov here (love him too but Nick is different).

If his desire is to retire so be it - but how any Red Wing fan who has gone through these last decades with Nick can just assume he's only out for the money is beyond me....just be patient and wait and see.

We will never replace Lids, but other teams have won the cup without him.... so can we.

The last time we won without Nick was 1955...just sayin'

Can the Wings rebuild in the Cap era? sure, but it will be tougher than you think...

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Great, now I'm depressed before Game Four even starts, and I've already gotten over the fact we're toast in the playoffs. Fark.

Same. If tomorrow really is his last game, I don't know how I would feel. It would take some time for it to hit me.

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Doom and Gloom... People thought when Yzerman left the wings were done, well we were not. I love lids, I'd take him over almost any player in the NHL. But I think he is done. What happens next you might ask? Simple... the Wings continue forward, acquire new talent and bring up kids that have been developing in the minors.

We will never replace Lids, but other teams have won the cup without him.... so can we.

Phenomenal post. I remember this board when we lost Stevie and Shanny in the same season.. I dont think anyone thought we'd recover.. People just need to put their emotions aside.

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Yes. This guy has more class than all of us on this thread put together. Don't presume he is greedy and self-centered and only wants the money

I agree it has nothing to do with greed. Nik has already given this organization so much, likewise he has been more than handsomely paid. what more should we expect from him?? I think he's more apt to call it a career at this point than to handcuff a team already strapped by the salary cap.

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Doom and Gloom... People thought when Yzerman left the wings were done, well we were not.

This isn't really a good analogy. Steve's role on the team had been diminishing rapidly for two or three seasons before he retired; he was still a good player when he left (you might remember he went on a great run from December of the '06 season and into the playoffs where he certainly didn't look like 40 year old with a bum knee) but was already well on his way to being replaced, and very adequately so, but Datsyuk and Zetterberg.

No other defenseman on the team is as good as Lidstrom; few defensemen in the league, even today, are as good as Lidstrom. He is the motor that powers the big red machine, and he does it on all fronts. I don't believe his departure will be the end of the Wings -- far from it -- but it will be unlike anything most Wings fans have yet experienced.

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OK, reading all these quotes from the Wings, I am now officially scared. It is sounding worryingly like he is going to retire. As HoH points out, his retirement is going to leave a gaping hole on the Wings, far bigger than Yzerman's retirement.

He's still one of the top 5 d-men in the league, but I guess age and injury have shown him to be human this season, for the first time ever. You never ever saw him make mistakes before. And for a guy who is so used to being perfect all the time, that must be hard to take. I'm reminded of Roy's retirement. He was still good, but no longer dominant. I remember the look on his face after they got upset by the Wild, he couldn't understand why he couldn't stop them from scoring.

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I won't be surprised at all if he hangs them up... At some points this season it was agonizing for me to watch him be so slow and weak out there on the ice. Tough to see Mr. Perfect become human. End of another era.

Well I dunno if I'd label Lids as slow, and weak, but I will say he's starting to show his age, and he's not as dominant as he was 4 to 8 years ago.

That said he stll got 2 years left in the tank, or at least I think he does.

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He is a smart guy. If he thinks that he can't be a top player anymore he is going to retire. It's way classier to leave when you're at the top of your game, and we all know Nick is all about class.

Unfortunately for us all his age is becoming a factor. Just think how many mistakes and giveaways ,uncharacteristic of him, you saw this playoff year. Too many for the Nick Lidstrom I'm used to seeing.

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Doom and Gloom... People thought when Yzerman left the wings were done, well we were not. I love lids, I'd take him over almost any player in the NHL. But I think he is done. What happens next you might ask? Simple... the Wings continue forward, acquire new talent and bring up kids that have been developing in the minors.

We will never replace Lids, but other teams have won the cup without him.... so can we.

The difference is, when Steve retired, we had already started transitioning new guys in (Pavs, Hank) to make his absence less noticeable. We have no one like that to help when Nick leaves. THAT'S why his absence will be that much more difficult.

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