DETROIT — Although the Red Wings have quite a few Americans on the team, there are plenty of players from other countries who don’t normally celebrate Thanksgiving.
"I’m sure a few of the Swedes will go together and do our own little Thanksgiving thing," Gustav Nyquist said. "We don’t have Thanksgiving in Sweden. I guess now that we’ve been here for so long, we enjoy the holiday as well. I’m sure we’ll get together and have a nice meal."
Nyquist said the Swedes all knew about the holiday from hearing it mentioned on television shows.
They don’t have Thanksgiving in Slovakia, either.
"Here I learned, bring the family together, have a really nice time, have a really nice dinner," Tomas Tatar said. "It’s a really good tradition here in the U.S. I’m really happy I can be part of it. I have friends here from Slovakia that have lived here over 20 years maybe so they give me a chance to come over to them so I’m really excited about it."
Some of the young Wings will likely find themselves celebrating together.
"We haven’t really talked it much, I live with Glennie (Luke Glendening) and Lash (Brian Lashoff)," Riley Sheahan said. "We haven’t really planned anything. If someone invites us over for a Thanksgiving meal, I’m sure we’re going to be open to that."
Although some of the players will be missing family back home, they still can celebrate their favorite parts of the holiday.
"You don’t have to feel bad about how much you eat," Nyquist said. "The best part is having families coming together. It’s fun to have everyone gathered around the table."
Unfortunately for Wings coach Mike Babcock, his family is out of town.
"My son’s in Fargo so my wife and two girls went to Fargo, they like him better than they like me," Babcock said. "All by myself. Poor guy, can you imagine? I think a lot of our coaches are by themselves just because their families are somewhere else. We’re going to New Jersey (Thursday) night. But I bet you there’s a way to get a meal somewhere."