The Detroit Red Wings are set to retire number 5 in the Joe on March 6th. Nicklas Lidstrom, one of the greatest the game has seen, on and off the ice, will forever be honored in the rafters of Joe Louis Arena along side of numerous other greats that have played for the historic team. The Red Wings have retired six numbers to date, including, #19 Steve Yzerman, #1 Terry Sawchuk, #10 Alex Delvecchio, #7 Ted Lindsay, #12 Sid Abel, and #9 Gordie Howe.
Lidstrom was drafted in 1989 in the third round by the Detroit Red Wings. Lidstrom quickly became one of the leagues best defenseman. He won the first of his seven Norris Trophies in 2001. Lidstrom was a 12 time all-star, and won four Stanley Cups in Detroit, including the Conn Smythe in the 2002 Championship run.
Lidstrom played 20 seasons in a Red Wings uniform, and was captain for the final six seasons of his career. Lidstrom played 1,564 games throughout his career and totaled 264 goals and 878 assists for a total of 1,142 points. Lidstrom retired with a plus-minus rating of +450.
Lidstrom’s ability to play at a high level showed in the playoffs as well. The Red Wings haven’t missed the playoffs in 22 seasons, and Lidstrom was there for all but the first and this last season during that streak. He played in 263 career playoff games, adding 54 goals and 129 assists.
March 6th, the Colorado Avalanche will be in Detroit, just to add a little salt to the wound with Patrick Roy behind the bench for the Aves now. Either way, March 6th will be the night that the Red Wings forever immortalize the greatest defenseman the city of Detroit has ever seen by hanging his number in the banners, mark your calenders ladies and gentleman.