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Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Former Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford, who helped bring the franchise two Stanley Cup trophies, stuns hockey world with decision to retire

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It turns out Corey Crawford received’t play a sport for any team varied than the Chicago Blackhawks.

The 2-time Stanley Cup champion announced his retirement Saturday, issuing a farewell commentary to fans and the Hawks and Fresh Jersey Devils organizations thru the Devils’ communications workforce.

The commentary came decrease than a week earlier than Crawford became place to initiating up the season with the Devils, with whom he signed a two-year, $7.8 million contract in October after the Hawks decided now to not re-stamp the venerable.

“I truly had been lucky to possess had a lengthy occupation taking part in expert hockey for a residing,” Crawford said within the commentary. “I wanted to proceed my occupation, however deem I’ve given all I will be succesful of to the sport of hockey, and I truly possess decided that it is time to retire. I would capture to thank the Fresh Jersey Devils organization for figuring out and supporting my resolution.

“I would capture to thank the Chicago Blackhawks organization for giving me the possibility to stay my childhood dream. I’m proud to had been fraction of a hit two Stanley Cups in Chicago. Thank you to all of my teammates and coaches during the years. Also, thanks to the fans who produce this immense sport what it is miles. I’m blissful and excited to switch on to the following chapter of my lifestyles with my family.”

Staunch Friday, the Devils said Crawford would be “taking an indefinite leave of absence attributable to private causes.” The 36-year-historical, who would’ve been coming into his 11th stout season within the NHL, did now not participate in camp.

The Hawks issued a commentary on social media congratulating Crawford on a “Hall of Fame-great occupation” and bringing up that he’ll remain a member of the “Blackhawks family forevermore.”

The Hawks chosen Crawford within the 2d spherical of the 2003 draft, and he became the team’s initiating goalie from 2010-11 thru closing season. Crawford spent 13 seasons with the Hawks and became a key fraction of their championship runs in 2013 and ’15.

He posted a occupation 260-162-53 narrative, 2.45 targets-against lifelike and .918 save percentage. He received two William M. Jennings trophies, awarded to the goaltenders of the team with the fewest targets against during the frequent season.

His wins are the third-most in franchise history and he holds the team narrative with 52 playoff victories.

Hawks winger Patrick Kane had nothing however reward for his ragged teammate.

“Fantastic player,” Kane said Saturday. “Obviously (he became) a huge fraction of our championships right here, huge fraction of the organization right here for the past 10 or 15 years and a immense guy to be spherical. Always perceived to be in a right mood, continuously competed in observe, which as a player you adore. He helped me recuperate, appropriate in observe.

“(I) nonetheless feel he’s taking part in at a terribly excessive stage going wait on to closing year and the playoffs. Wish him the whole finest. … Infrequently there’s bigger things in lifestyles than hockey and wish him the whole finest within the long term.”

Did Crawford’s resolution shock Kane?

“Yeah, I know that he’s getting a chunk of bit older however I nonetheless conception he became taking part in at a dazzling-excessive stage,” Kane said. “I wager it’s a chunk of bit homely. I’m now not going to talk for him as to what went into his resolution or why he decided to retire. Every person has their causes.

“Staunch what we saw closing year he became improbable for us the 2d half of the season, within the playoffs and likewise during the past 10 years he’s been an believable goaltender, played at a excessive stage continuously and is a big motive four our team’s success.”

Added Hawks defenseman Duncan Keith: “I haven’t spoken to him however I’m sure there’s a few mixed emotions there for him. I will be succesful of’t affirm sufficient right things about Crow and the teammate that he became.

“Every person knows what he became ready to conclude for us in score, specifically during these playoff runs and the closing various years right here being the backbone of our team.”

Coach Jeremy Colliton said he didn’t know if the team would give Crawford a one-day contract so he can retire as a Blackhawk or honor him in some ability during the season, however “whether or not they conclude it or now not, he’s a Blackhawk. He’ll be remembered as a Blackhawk.”

Florida Panthers coach Joel Quenneville, who became Crawford’s coach in Chicago thru 2018-19, suggested the Day-to-day Herald’s John Dietz: “It became a privilege to possess the opportunity to educate Crow, and I thank him for his contributions to the Hawks’ championship runs. He validated the significance of what immense goaltending ability. Wish ‘Crow’ health and happiness as he begins his next chapter in lifestyles.”

Crawford also got smartly wishes from ragged teammates and others within the hockey world.

Andrew Shaw, Crawford’s teammate for six seasons, wrote on Instagram: “Most productive of glorious fortune where ever you not sleep Crow! You for all time gave us 100 p.c and I’ll never forget that! Many of admire for you! Thanks for continuously being you! Hall of Famer in my books bud!”

Alex DeBrincat tweeted, “Congrats on retirement Crow!”

“Congrats Crow on a immense occupation! Wish you the right,” Hawks ahead Matthew Highmore wrote on his Twitter yarn.

Chicago defenseman Adam Boqvist tweeted, “Wishing you the right in retirement, Crow!”

On his Instagram yarn, ragged Hawks winger Bryan Bickell known as Crawford a “right teammate however a bigger glorious friend,” at the side of “congrats Corey on (an) extra special occupation.”

Inclined Hawk and original Canadiens goaltender Phil Danault suggested Jonathan Bernier of Le Journal de Montreal that Crawford became “a immense chief in Chicago. He took me under his cruise. I had appropriate arrived in Chicago, it became my birthday, and he had me for dinner. It confirmed the immense chief that he became. He became indubitably a winner.”

Crawford dealt with two concussions and lingering symptoms over a two-season span, being placed on injured reserve in December 2017, October 2018 and December 2018.

At some level of the summer season, Crawford overcame a bout with COVID-19 and joined Hawks practising camp a day earlier than the team flew to Edmonton, Alberta, for the postseason. He helped propel them past the Edmonton Oilers in a qualifying series earlier than bowing to the Vegas Golden Knights within the valuable spherical of the expanded playoffs after the ruin thanks to the pandemic.

After some standout performances within the Edmonton bubble, Crawford expressed the have to return to the Hawks. He and now-president of hockey operations Stan Bowman reportedly couldn’t conform to terms on the dimension of the deal.

After signing with the Devils, Crawford suggested journalists he became “devastated” with the Hawks’ resolution to head with youthful choices on the place.

“I became reasonably devastated to earn the news about now not returning to Chicago,” he said Oct. 10. “That’s all I’ve known in my occupation. … We appropriate didn’t return and forth the least bit. … It became a sturdy phone name. … For me, it became reasonably emotional after that talking to one of the valuable gamers.”

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