After 17 years in the NHL, Daniel and Henrik Sedin announced on the Vancouver Canucks website that they will hang up their skates at the end of the season.
"We started the year with the mindset that a decision would be made in the postseason. But it became clear, after discussions with our families throughout the year, that this will be our last season..." https://t.co/hOhtj2kTLM— Vancouver #Canucks (@Canucks) April 2, 2018
It quickly started a waterfall of comments from fans, former players, media members, etc. around the hockey community, and when the news reached the Blackhawks locker room, there were nothing but positive things to say about two players who were on the other end of one of the more memorable rivalries in Blackhawks history.
Here's what they all had to say:
"Great players, great people. I think they've done a lot for not only that organization on the ice but the city of Vancouver and British Columbia. Two guys that you want to have as teammates, as role models on your team. Incredibly tough guys to play against as well.
"I know that looking back on our years, 2008-14, they were a huge rival of ours. We played against them a ton in the playoffs, so on one hand it's a sad day to see them leave the league but on the other hand it should be a celebration for all the great things they've done in their career."
When the Blackhawks and Canucks faced each other for the final time this season on March 22, Sharp received a signed stick by the Sedins after the game "just in case" it was the last time they'd be playing against each other.
Here was the exchange they shared on the bench immediately following the final horn:
"They've both had incredible careers. At this age, as young as the game is, they're still able to make incredible plays and go out there and make a difference for their team every night. It'll be a relief not to play against those guys going forward."
Is Toews surprised that they're calling it quits?
"For sure. I guess everyone has their own reasons. Those two seem to always follow each other one way or another throughout their entire career, and I'm sure they both feel they want to go out on top. They can probably still play another handful of years, but you respect their decision though. Obviously honor them for the careers that they've had and some of the great series' we've had against them and that team's heyday as well."
"They're still effective players, so it will be sad to see them go. I know the league will miss them and what they brought to the game. Their effectiveness with the give-and-go and being able to make it more of a 2-on-1 game than a 1-on-1 game is something that helped change the game to what it is now. They'll definitely be missed. They had great careers; two very special players."
Victor Ejdsell, a Swedish native
"Obviously when you watch them it's a treat for everyone. How they work together on the ice is incredible. You see how their vision is for every game and how they create things all the time is amazing."
"They were great for the game, great for the Canucks. They gave teams a lot of trouble over the years with a special way of communicating on the ice, where their anticipation [of] where the other brother was was unbelievable. How they were in sync was amazing.
"Their anticipation, possession, passing, precision, was unbelievable. As good as we've seen. So it's a pretty amazing career they've had. We had some great runs with them in the playoffs. They're competitive every single night, you saw them. But you can only wish them the best. The league's been better for these guys."