BOSTON — Daniel Alfredsson’s latest pursuit of the Stanley Cup ended Saturday when the Boston Bruins eliminated his Detroit Red Wings in five games in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
The 41-year-old veteran, who chose Detroit over Boston as a free agent in July, doesn’t know if he will retire or return for a 19th NHL season. Alfredsson said after Game 5 that he will take some time before making the decision.
“You take some time off here and just decompose everything, take everything in,” Alfredsson said. “There’s been a lot of new impressions obviously for me and my family, but overall we’ve had a fun, challenging year. We’ve all learned a lot, so I’ll take some time and settle down, and start the process from there.”
Alfredsson played in 68 regular-season games for Detroit and posted 49 points (18 goals, 31 assists). He’s still a productive player and skilled enough to fill a top-nine role next year. The only question for him going forward is health, which played a role in his lack of scoring during the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.
“Obviously, that’s a discussion for a later time, but health is a big part of any veteran player and can they be healthy enough to play and help your team,” Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock said when asked about Alfredsson’s future. “And there’s no question about ability, it’s about health.”
Alfredsson missed Games 3 and 4 with an injury but returned for Game 5. He failed to register a point and earned a minus-1 rating with two shots in three games against the Bruins. He was a complete non-factor at even strength and on the power play.
In the event that Alfredsson comes back for the 2014-15 season, remaining with the Red Wings is a very real possibility.
“I think at the moment, if I come back, that’s the likely scenario,” he said.
Photo via Twitter/@StuMillsCBC