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Sundin Grateful to Leafs Fans for Wonderful Memories

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Last night, Mats Sundin stepped up to the podium to acknowledge his receipt of the greatest individual honour a hockey player can receive. He was introduced by Daniel Alfredsson who, for all the flak he takes from Leafs fans, did an incredible job and called Mats the greatest Swedish hockey player ever. Now, that caused some consternation on Twitter because I think we probably agree that Nik Lidstrom and Peter Forsberg might have been better players but Alfie's opinion seems to include the impact that Mats' success meant for European trained players as well as the veneration that many Swedes hold him in as the long-time captain of their national team including during the 2006 Olympics.

You can see the speech for yourself but Mats is at his usual best with the kind of display of emotions that became more prevalent as his career winded down. In fact, the ending, when he says that he will never play in the NHL again but that he will carry his memories with him forever is heartbreaking. We sure could use him.

Video can also be found over at NHL.com