After a two-decade career with the Detroit Red Wings that included 1,827 games (regular season and playoffs), four Stanley Cups, 318 goals and 1,007 assists, Nicklas Lidstrom retired in May 2012 as one of the greatest defensemen ever.
"Sadly, this year it's painfully obvious to me that my strength and energy level are not rebounding enough for me to continue to play," Lidstrom said at the time. "My drive, motivation are not where it needs to be to play at this level, and it's time to retire."
Lidstrom won seven Norris Trophy awards as the leagues top defenseman -- equaling Doug Harveys total and coming one shy of Bobby Orrs record eight -- won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2002 as the playoff MVP and in 2008 became the first European born-and-trained captain to hoist the Cup.
He also scored the winning goal for his native land Sweden in a 3-2 victory over Finland to win an Olympic gold medal in 2006 and was named to the NHL All-Star team 12 times.
About the only thing Lidstrom didnt...