Nicklas Lidstrom: “(I wasn’t) where I wanted to be.”

DETROIT — Many players play through injuries in the playoffs, Nicklas Lidstrom was one of them.

Lidstrom missed 11 games in the later part of the regular season with a deep ankle bruise and could never get back to full health.

“(I wasn’t) where I wanted to be,” Lidstrom said. “You want to be out there killing penalties, you want to be more in a rhythm but when you can’t do it, it’s hard to get that rhythm going.”

Lidstrom, who wound up missing a career-high 12 games this regular season, needed injections before games to dull the pain and it didn’t allow him play on the penalty kill.

“I felt it during practice a little bit when we were skating but I didn’t want to take too many shots (pain killing) for practices,” said Lidstrom, who will turn 42 at the end of April. “Once the games were played it didn’t bother me at all.”

The seven-time Norris Trophy winner said the injury won’t weigh on his decision to return for a 21st year with the Wings.

“That’s not going to have any effect on my decision,” Lidstrom said. “It’s going to be the same approach as last year. I’ll sit down with Kenny (Holland), we’ll have our year end meetings in the next few days or next couple of weeks and go from there. The factors haven’t changed.

“The summer workouts, they get harder as you get older,” Lidstrom added. “I know it’s something you have to go through to be able to play throughout the whole season. You’re getting a year older, that’s the main thing.”


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