Former Detroit Red Wings defenseman and captain Nicklas Lidstrom is regarded as one of the greatest – if not the greatest – blue liner of all time in the National Hockey League. A 12-time All-Star, seven-time Norris Trophy winner, Conn Smythe Trophy winner, and four-time Stanley Cup champion….does it get better than that?
Lidstrom is in town promoting his new book “Nicklas Lidstrom: The Pursuit of Perfection”, and was interviewed prior to attending Sunday night’s home game at Little Caesars Arena. He was specifically asked about the allegations against former coach Mike Babcock by former fellow Swedish teammate Johan Franzen.
Here’s what Lidstrom had to say to Stephen Henderson of “Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson” on 101.9 WDET, Detroit Public Radio :
“I feel for Johan when I read that story,” Lidstrom said. “That’s something I wasn’t aware of, it came up much later. Mike Babcock was a demanding coach. He demanded a lot from his players, and he had his teams prepared. He knew what to put in front of the players every day for the team to be successful, but he could be demanding too. Sometimes when you’re into the grind of playing and working hard every day, it sometimes gets tiring on your body and mind. He was more of a demanding coach in he demanded a lot from his players.”
How about some of the differences between Babcock and Scotty Bowman?
“They were a little different,” he explained. “Babcock was more hands on in which he wanted control of the special teams or how the team does offensively or defensively. Scotty more relied on his assistants. H’ed have one coach work the power play and another coach work the penalty killing, and kind of give them the responsibility. Scotty was more overseeing everything, whereas Babcock was more hands on. Being a little bit of an older coach, Scotty kept his distance from his players than what Mike did, so that’s some of the difference I saw.”
—Quotes courtesy of “Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson” on 101.9 WDET, Detroit Public Radio — Link