CHICAGO – At the end of the day, he’ll never play a game for a team other than the Blackhawks.
That’s because Corey Crawford is hanging up his skates even before he takes the ice as a member of the New Jersey Devils.
After ten NHL seasons, the goaltender is retiring after 488 regular season games and two Stanley Cup championships. All of those were accomplished with the Blackhawks, and though he signed with the Devils after the team declined to offer a contract this past summer, he never played a game in New Jersey.
He had been on a personal leave to start training camp the past week, but eventually announced his retirement on Saturday.
“I have been fortunate to have had a long career playing professional hockey for a living. I wanted to continue my career, but believe I’ve given all I can to the game of hockey, and I have decided that it is time to retire,” said Crawford in a statement released by the NHLPA. “I would like to thank the New Jersey Devils organization for understanding and supporting my decision. I would like to thank the Chicago Blackhawks organization for giving me the chance to live my childhood dream.
“I am proud to have been part of winning two Stanley Cups in Chicago. Thank you to all of my teammates and coaches throughout the years. Also, thank you to the fans who make this great game what it is. I am happy and excited to move on to the next chapter of my life with my family.”
Drafted by the Blackhawks in the second round of the 2003 NHL Draft, Crawford played 13 seasons in Chicago after making his debut in the 2005-2006 season. He twice helped the Blackhawks to Stanley Cup titles as the primary goaltender in 2013 and 2015, twice was part of a goaltending group that one the Jennings Trophy for fewest goals allowed.
Crawford went 260-162-53 with a 2.45 goals against average in the regular season and 52-42 with a 2.38 GAA in 94 playoff starts.