The 36-year-old goalkeeper, who won the Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2013 and 2015, took an indefinite absence from the New Jersey Devils for personal reasons on Friday after missing five consecutive training sessions during training camp.
“I was happy to have a long career playing professional hockey to make a living,” Crawford said. “I wanted to continue my career, but I believe I gave everything I could to the hockey game and decided it was time to retire. I would like to thank the New Jersey Devil organization for understanding and supporting my decision. I would like to thanks to the Chicago Blackhawks for giving me the chance to live my childhood dream. “
Crawford agreed to a two-year, $ 7.8 million contract with the Devils on Oct. 1
He was 52-42 with a 2.38 GAA, a save rate of .918 and five suspensions in 96 playoff games for the Stanley Cup. Crawford’s 52 playoff victories is a Blackhawks record.
“Corey has an unforgettable place in our organization, in the hearts of our fans and in the sports history of Chicago,” the Blackhawks said in a statement. “We congratulate Corey on a decent playing career at the Hall of Fame – the one we celebrate with him today as a member of the Blackhawks family forever.
Crow is not only one of the greatest goalkeepers in the history of the Chicago Blackhawks franchise, but he has been a pillar in our local community throughout his career. … it has excited a generation of Blackhawks fans over the past decade, plus, until it brought the city of Chicago, two Stanley cups. We wish him, his wife, Christie, and his sons, Cooper and Camden, nothing but the best in this next chapter. ”
Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane, who has played with Crawford for 13 seasons, said Crawford’s contribution is far beyond stopping the puck.
“He was an amazing player and obviously a lot of our championships here, a lot of the organization over the last 10-15 years,” Kane said on Saturday. “He’s a great guy around, he always looked in a good mood, he always competed in practice. He only helped me get better in practice. Obviously I still feel like he’s playing at a really high level, going back to last year’s playoffs. “I guess I just wish him all the best. Obviously we’ll talk and talk to him, but sometimes there are more important things than hockey and we wish him all the best in the future.”
“He always had the attitude that he wanted to win another championship and he felt he could do it here. You always appreciated his level of confidence and he wanted to play. You know, he was a gamer? But he became a gamer. these great games and shone in these great games. “
Crawford, who missed 80 games in the previous two seasons due to turmoil, was 16-20-3 with a 2.77 GAA, a savings percentage of .917 and an elimination in 40 games (39 starts) last season.
“I’m proud to have been part of winning two Stanley Cups in Chicago,” Crawford said. “Thanks to all my teammates and coaches over the years. Also, thanks to the fans who make this great game the way it is. I’m happy and excited to move on to the next chapter of my life with my family.”
NHL.com staff writer Tracy Myers contributed to this report
Video: Corey Crawford’s Top 10 saves from 2019-20