DETROIT — In his final address as a Detroit Red Wing, Tomas Holmstrom thanked his teammates, coaches, and the Red Wings staff.
Holmstrom announced his retirement Tuesday in a press conference at Joe Louis Arena, prior to the Red Wings’ home opener against the Dallas Stars.
in taking the next step in his life — away from a 15-year career in the National Hockey League, all with the Red Wings — Holmstrom didn’t forget to add some humor.
Holmstrom considered his fondest memories in his NHL career: Namely the four Stanley Cups he won with the Red Wings, and his current and former teammates.
Two notable instances stood out. First, when former teammate Luc Robitaille, a Hockey Hall of Famer who is now the Los Angeles Kings’ president of business operations, suggested he tinker with the unusually flat blade of his stick.
“I redid it one day,” Holmstrom said. “And I almost got traded.”
He also considered the legacy — as well as the unique fashion sense — of goalie Dominik Hasek, his Red Wings teammate for four seasons.
“I love his suits,” Holmstrom said. “I can’t [ever] forget those.”
Holmstrom, a left wing and a native of Pitea, Sweden, played his entire career with the Red Wings, scoring 243 goals and 287 assists in 1,026 career games, and he scored 46 goals and 51 assists in 180 playoff games.
Holmstrom admitted that his announcement Tuesday was coming — even as far back as what ultimately became his final NHL season.
“I may have had a feeling of it, even when I played last year,” Holmstrom said. “The body’s saying, kind of, ‘no’ when you wake up in the morning and you stumble into the bathroom, and it takes the body forever to get going.”
Before introducing Holmstrom for a final time, Red Wings general manager Ken Holland nodded to Holmstrom’s three children, sitting in the front row of the Olympia Club.
“You’ve got your dad back,” Holland said. “We’ve had him for over 1,000 games.”
Later in his speech, Holmstrom humorously considered the next step in his life, then looked directly at his three children.
“Now I’m going to be home more,” he told them. “So listen to me, OK?”
NYQUIST, HUSKINS ADDED: The Red Wings called up forward Gustav Nyquist from Grand Rapids of the American Hockey League prior to Tuesday’s game. Nyquist is fourth in AHL scoring with 14 goals and 26 assists in 39 games with Grand Rapids this season.
The Red Wings returned Nyquist to Grand Rapids after the game.
The Red Wings placed Todd Bertuzzi (illness) and Carlo Colaiacovo (upper body injury) on the injured reserve list, and signed free-agent defenseman Kent Huskins to a one-year contract.
AGELESS: Dallas wing Jaromir Jagr kicked off his 19th NHL season and his first with the Stars, less than four weeks away from his 41st birthday on Feb. 15.
Jagr has 667 goals and 990 assists in 1,348 career NHL games with Pittsburgh, Washington, the New York Rangers, Philadelphia, and Dallas.
Jagr entered Tuesday's game with four points — two goals, two assists — all garnered in Dallas' season opener Saturday, a 4-3 win over the Phoenix Coyotes.