Thursday, December 16, 2010

Clearing Up Some Possible Confusion

Many, if not most, of you Gentle Readers may have been confused by my post title last night when I referred to Niklas Lidstrom as "The Perfect Human."  And that's understandable unless your name is SN1 or mebbe one or two others... those of you that are among the few, the proud, the hockey fans.  And so along comes Pierre LeBrun with an explanation... to wit: "Nicklas Lidstrom, 'The Perfect Human'."  Let's quote:
DETROIT -- The passes are tape to tape, right in the middle of the stick blade, timed just right for the player taking them in stride. One after the other -- zip, zip, zip -- Nicklas Lidstrom seemingly can't miss.
It's a Thursday morning practice at Joe Louis Arena, one just like any other of the 3,000 or so practices he's skated in the past 20 years. And just like those other times, Lidstrom is dead-on every single time he makes a play.
"We call him the Perfect Human," said Detroit Red Wings teammate Niklas Kronwall. "And there's a reason for it. Whatever he does, he seems to do perfectly, so I think that's a pretty good nickname."
The Perfect Human is 40 years old. Not that you can tell while watching him on the ice this season. After failing to get nominated for the Norris Trophy in 2009-10, Lidstrom is back stronger than ever, and if the season ended today, it says here he'd be picking up his seventh award as the NHL's top defenseman.
Read the whole thing if'n you're a hockey fan; you'll burn in Hell if you don't read it if'n you're a Wings fan.  The rest of you... the hoi polloi, the Great Unwashed, the ignurunt... can read or not, as you see fit.  Whatever.  But be advised this article is the longest, most in-depth profile of Lidstrom I've read in quite a while.  The quotes are priceless, coming as they do from the highest levels of hockey, including Bobby Orr, the guy Lidstrom is frequently compared to and the greatest defenseman of all time.  It's great good stuff, and the piece just might be the best thing LeBrun has EVER done.  Don't ignore this one if you're a hockey fan.  Just don't.

5 comments:

  1. I probably won't read the whole thang, but thanks for tryin' to learn us somethin'.

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  2. You'll pardon me whilst I go wash.

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  3. Buck, Thanks for the link. I read the post and watched the video. (I am trying to learn about this game!) This guy Lidstrom does sound like the perfect hockey player. His physical skills at that age are amazing. But I really like his attitude. Some (not me) have called ARod the perfect baseball player. He's good, but from the video and from the other things other players say about Lidstrom, I'm pretty sure he has a little different (read: much better) overall attitude toward the game and his fellow players than does ARod.

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  4. Thanks for taking the time to read the piece, Dan. One of the things you'll come to know about hockey culture (if you stick with it) is the self-effacing nature of its stars. I don't know exactly WHY this is and there is much speculation about the phenomenon. There ARE exceptions to the general rule, of course... every large group of people have their idiots. The culture is a big part of why I love the game; the players generally reflect the values I believe men should both possess and live by.

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