CHICAGO (CBS) — Former Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford announced his retirement Saturday, according to the NHL Players’ Association.
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) January 9, 2021
“‘Crow’ is not only one of the greatest goaltenders in Chicago Blackhawks franchise history but was also a pillar in our local community throughout his entire career,” the Blackhawks said in a release.
Wishing Corey Crawford good health and happiness. One of the best! https://t.co/kdTz3RGejt
— Krista Ruch (@KristaCBS2) January 9, 2021
Crawford’s retirement comes less than three months after signing with the New Jersey Devils and less than a week before the start of the NHL season.
The 36-year-old goalie made the announcement Saturday after a week of speculation about his future. He did not practice this week. Devils coach Lindy Ruff said the decision was for personal reasons.
“I have been fortunate to have had a long career playing professional hockey for a living,” Crawford said in a statement. “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.”
Crawford said playing in the NHL was a childhood dream and he was proud to have been a part of winning two Stanley Cups.
He played for 10 NHL seasons and 488 regular-season games. He signed a two-year, a $7.8 million contract as a free agent with the Devils in October.
New Jersey opens its season at home Thursday against Boston. MacKenzie Blackwood returns as the Devils’ top goaltender.
Crawford was a second-round draft pick of the Blackhawks in 2003. He won 260 regular-season games and recorded a franchise-high 52 playoff wins, winning the Cup in 2012-13 and 2014-15.
Crawford made his NHL debut in 2006. He became Chicago’s starting goalie in 2010-11 when he also finished fourth in Calder Trophy voting, winning 33 games and posting four shutouts with a .917 save percentage. He earned his first William M. Jennings Trophy in 2012-13, together with teammate Ray Emery, for Chicago allowing the fewest goals thanks in part to his 1.94 goals-against average.
Crawford led Chicago to a tie with Montreal (Carey Price) for the fewest goals allowed in 2014-15, earning his second William M. Jennings Trophy. In the 2014-15 playoffs, Crawford helped lead the Blackhawks to another Stanley Cup victory thanks to his 13 wins and two shutouts. He set career-best marks in 2015-16 in wins (35) and shutouts (7) while finishing fifth in Vezina Trophy voting.
(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)