New Jersey Devils Goalkeeper Corey CrawfordAfter taking an indefinite leave from the team on Friday for personal reasons, he announced his retirement on Saturday.
“I was fortunate to have spent my long career playing professional hockey for a living. I wanted to continue my career, but I think I gave my all to hockey and decided it was time to retire,” Crawford said in a statement released on Saturday. “I would like to thank New Jersey Devils for their understanding and support for my decision.
“I would like to thank the Chicago Blackhawks for giving me the opportunity to live my childhood dream. I am proud to be a part of winning the Stanley Cup in Chicago. Thanks to all of my teammates and coaches over the years. Thanks to the fans who made this great game what it is. I am happy. I am excited to move on to the next chapter of my life with my family. “
The 36-year-old Crawford, who signed a two-year deal with the Demons last season with an average annual value of $ 3.9 million, has not trained since opening training camp last week. Coach Lindy Raf described his absences at first as “maintenance days”, before the team said it would spend its personal days on Wednesday and Thursday.
He has been a goalkeeper for the Blackhawks since 2010-11 – and helped them in both Stanley Cups – but the team decided not to sign him again this season.
Crawford ended his Blackhawks career third in franchise history with 260 career victories, trailing only Tony Esposito and Glenn Hall. Crawford is the leader of the Black Hawk franchise in post-season (52) and is the only goalkeeper in the team’s history with several Stanley Cups.
Devils have a 24-year-old goalkeeper MacKenzie Blackwood, Who was re-signed to a three-year, $ 8.4 million pre-boot camp contract. They also have three other goalkeepers on the camp roster – Scott Wedgwood (24 games from the NHL Experience), Gil Sen (2 games) and Evan Cormer, Who has never played an NHL match.