After 15 years, four-time Stanley Cup championships, Olympic championship and a Swedish league championship, Tomas Holmstrom made it official Tuesday, announcing his retirement from the NHL.
"I maybe had a feeling even playing last year," said Holmstrom, who turns 40 on Wednesday. "The body was saying. You wake up in the morning, you're stumbling to the bathroom, it takes forever to get the body going. You can tell you're taking a beating. After a while that wears on you."
"People think I was crazy taking all those cross-checks to my neck, my head [but] I had the greatest job in the world," he said. "Now it's time to move on."
"The body was saying. You wake up in the morning, you're stumbling to the bathroom, it takes forever to get the body going. You can tell you're taking a beating. After a while that wears on you." Said Holmstrom
Holmstrom is one of six players in team history to skate in 1,000 games for the Red Wings (1,026). In 15 seasons -- all with the Red Wings -- he had 243 goals and 530 points, ranking him 11th and 13th, respectively, in team history. He had at least 10 power-play goals seven times in 15 seasons, and his 122 power-play goals are third on the team's all-time list.
Red Wings comments on Holmstroms retirement:
Todd Bertuzzi: "He took it to an art form," "There are guys that can stand in front of the net and screen, but there aren't guys that can actually tip 100 mile per hour slap shots coming from every angle. He just took it to a whole new level."
Henrik Zetterburg: "He didn't feel pain. He couldn't feel pain," "Especially back when the rules were different. It was a free-for-all on him every game, night in and night out. It's amazing that he could keep his body together for this long."
Coach Mike Babcock: "Homer [Holmstrom] was a star at what he did," "The best in the National Hockey League, in my opinion."
GM Kenny Hollands: "When you think about Homer, I think about him in his office in the blue paint, doing his thing," "Aggravating the goaltender, aggravating the other team's defensemen, drawing a crowd so our other guys could do their thing. He was fearless, went to all the hard areas, paid the price night after night after night. He has a huge heart -- he's all heart. A great teammate."
POLL: Where would you rank Holmstrom in the list of the best players to ever play the game?
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