Roughly Translated: Per Expressen, Nicklas Lidstrom’s Swedish Radio interview discusses #5’s anxiety issues

Nicklas Lidstrom recently spoke with the “Sommar & Vinter i P1” program on Swedish Radio, and Lidstrom gave a nearly 90-minute-long interview.

According to the Swedish sports tabloids, Aftonbladet and Expressen, Lidstrom discussed the furor that Swedish fans unleashed upon Tommy Salo when he gave up an infamous goal to Belarus during the 2002 Olympics, he talked about his decision to move home, per Aftonbladet’s Andreas Kack (and what follows is roughly translated)…

In his summer talk, Lidstrom also tells about the sacrifices he had to make as an NHL pro. He couldn’t spend much time with his four children.

“Annika had to take the main responsibilities at home. I couldn’t deal with it on Friday mornings, there was no time for it. We played 3 to 4 games a week, so I missed a lot of things: school activities, when the children learned to bike and take their first steps. I think most players on the team felt the same. It broke their heart when their children called and asked why they weren’t home. But we didn’t talk about it between players. There’s a certain macho culture that’s in the locker room,” says Nicklas Lidstrom.

And Lidstrom admitted that he suffered from some anxiety prior to games, as Expressen’s Kalle Forsell noted:

Lidstrom: “The air doesn’t go down into the lungs”

Concern and nervousness about requirements of performance. In “Summer on P1,” hockey legend Nicklas Lidstrom, 49, tells about an unknown page he had to deal with during his career as an elite player.

“Many dampen their anxiety and anxiety outside the rink using pills or alcohol. For me, the nervousness and concern was about catching my breath,” he says during the program.

In Nicklas Lidstrom’s summer talk, he goes through many episodes of his very successful career.

He talks about his upbringing, his successful tournaments with the Tre Kronor, about the Stanley Cup wins with the Detroit Red Wings and about the difficulties of being an absent dad and husband when he was with NHL professionals.

Lidstrom’s unknown side: anxiety

Throughout, Nicklas Lidstrom also tells about an unknown chapter. About how he dealt with the pressure, stress and anxiety that accompanied him during his career.

He tells about an episode when, at the beginning of his NHL career, he is sitting in the Red Wings’ locker room next to Russian stars Vladimir Konstantinov and Vyacheslav Fetisov.

“It was hard to breathe. I could only breathe shallowly, and the air didn’t go down my lungs,” says Lidas in “Summer on P1,” and he continues:

“That’s how I felt the pressure, the nervousness before the games. For all players, it takes different expressions. Some ask, some can’t be helped. Some hold their stick so hard on the ice that they can’t touch their arms. Some forget about skating. Many dampen their anxiety and anxiety outside the rink with pills or alcohol. To me, the nervousness was concerning my breathing. Playing in front of 20,000 loud fans and everything that can happen out there that makes the ride ever shorter.”

“Considered for a long time if we were going to stay”

Nicklas Lidstrom finished his long career as a hockey player in 2012. During the program, he tells about the nervousness during his press conference where he announced his hockey farewell–and before the speech he would give when his jersey was retired a few years later.

Today, Nicklas Lidstrom lives in Vasteras, with his wife Annika, with whom he has four sons (Kevin, Adam, Samuel and Lukas).

They live there in a newly-built, large home.

“We considered for a long time whether we would stay in Detroit. It was not self-evident that we would move home to Sweden. But once we came to grips with it we had to choose it,” Lidas has previously said in an interview with SportExpressen.

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George Malik

My name is George Malik, and I'm the Malik Report's editor/blogger/poster. I have been blogging about the Red Wings since 2006, when MLive hired me to work their SlapShots blog, and I joined Kukla's Korner in 2011 as The Malik Report. I'm starting The Malik Report as a stand-alone site, hoping that having my readers fund the website is indeed the way to go to build a better community and create better content.