Blog Entry

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

Posted on: August 19, 2011 11:38 am
Edited on: August 19, 2011 1:44 pm
  •  
 

By Brian Stubits

Chris Drury is retiring from hockey. He made the announcement through the NHLPA on Friday morning.

Drury, the Rangers captain, was bought out by New York and didn't find work after that. There had to be concerns about the degenerative condition in his knee that limited him to only 24 games last season and one goal.

Drury's best season came in 2006-07 with the Sabres. That season he scored 37 goals and had 32 assists.

He was also on hand for some of the Avalanche's best seasons, playing his first four years in the NHL in Colorado until 2001-02, winning the Stanley Cup with the Avs in '01. The following year he was traded to Calgary where he had a short stint with the Flames.

Adrian Dater of the Denver Post offers up a fond farewell to one of the key parts to the Avs' Cup run. Here's a taste:

Drury was beloved by Avs fans, even after he left in that ill-advised trade to Calgary in 2002. He was a heart-and-soul guy with a major knack for scoring clutch goals. At one point I remember writing, he had eight game-winning or overtime playoff goals with Colorado.

It hardly seems possible his career is finished. I can still remember the first time he came to Avs camp back in 1998, just a doughy-faced kid not that far removed from being a Little League World Series hero for his town of Trumbull, Conn. I remember his first Burgundy-White game down in Colorado Springs, when he immediately got challenged to a fight by Pascal Trepanier. Drury aced his first rite of passage by standing up for himself – something almost every NHL rookie has to do at some point.

He ended up in Buffalo and had a very strong three seasons with the Sabres. At that point, though, he became a free agent and signed with the Rangers, his hometown team considering his roots stem from Trumbull, Conn. When Jaromir Jagr left the Blueshirts, Drury was bestowed the C on his jersey, making him just the second American-born captain in Rangers history.

NHL writer Andy Strickland says this was a decision Drury knew was coming for some time. "Chris Drury has known he would be retiring for several weeks ... had a great career who delivered when it mattered." Strickland also shot down any notions that Drury had been in discussions with the Maple Leafs at any point about playing in Toronto. "There was speculation several weeks ago that Drury had met with Toronto GM Brian Burke...tis was 100% wrong ... never happened "

Unfortunately, such an injury made the decision somewhat easy for Drury to make -- from a decision standpoint, not emotional.

Because he had two years left on his contract, the Rangers will have Drury hitting the cap over that time. According to capgeek.com that will mean the Rangers will take a $3.72 million hit next season and a $1.67 million hit in 2012-13.

Among the reactions on Twitter came this tweet from Rangers backup goalie Marty Biron: "Congrats to a friend and teammate on a great career. Chris Drury, you'll always be one of the best captain I've had the chance to play with."

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

  •  
Comments
kkjyywlpo
Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 12:59 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: August 22, 2011 6:01 pm
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

Thank you for the kind words. Let me explain something to you. At the end of the 2006-07, Drury PROMISED Darcey Reiger that he would give Buffalo a chance to match or beat any free agent offer that was made to him. As soon as the signing date opened up, Drury signed with the Rangers. To me this is DISHONEST and I have no respect for a man that gives his word then doesn't stick to it.



Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: August 22, 2011 5:52 pm
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

At the end of 2006-07 season, Drury PROMISED Darcy Regier that he would give the Sabres a chance to match or beat any free agent offer. Drury signed with the Rangers shortly after the free agency date. Therefore I say he is dishonest. IMHO



Since: Jan 21, 2007
Posted on: August 22, 2011 4:13 pm
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

He was a big time clutch performer for the Avalanche along with Joe Sakic and Peter Forsberg.Oh, how I long for those days! Good luck in retirement, Chris!



Since: Jun 20, 2009
Posted on: August 22, 2011 11:53 am
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

"So he retires but his salary still counts against the Cap?? However, you can send someone to the minors( Wade Redden I believe) but then it doesn't count against the cap. what am i missing here?? Why don't the Rangers just send him to their minor league team, Binghampton, I think, and then let him retire"


The first thing that happened in this saga was the Rangers bought out Drury's contract (meaning they take a smaller cap hit), making him a FA.  He made his decision to retire after he guaged the interest in him from other teams.  If the Rangers had not bought out Drury, then there's a big chance he wouldn't have retired, he would've stayed in NYC.



Since: Jan 21, 2008
Posted on: August 22, 2011 12:20 am
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

It was a great day when the Rangers signed Drury, the team he grew up rooting up.  Unfortunately the dream that he had and we as  Rangers fans envisioned never came to pass.  His stature was only 5'10'', but he always payed as if he were 6'5".  He played with heart, intensity and skill that Ranger fans and for that matter hockey fans everywhere will miss.  His leadership will be missed and if salary cap constraints were different,  I beleive the Rangers would have attempted to keep him, especially with the addition of Brad Richards to the fold.  Unfortunately, his last year with the Blueshirts was one of injury and frustration.  I am  proud as a Rangers fan that he had the opportunity to wear the Shield.  I'm sure most.  if not all fans of the Avs and Sabres, teams he also wore their colors proudly for, feel the same way. His heart, soul and attitude will be sorely missed by the Rangers and fans of the team.  Chris, Good Luck in whatever endeavor  you pursue.  Fans of Chris Drury know he will bring the same quiet intensity to whatever that may be, just as he did each night he laced'em up in his illustrious career.   



Since: Sep 10, 2009
Posted on: August 21, 2011 1:01 pm
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

Sabres fan! Chris rocked!



Since: Apr 23, 2010
Posted on: August 21, 2011 12:43 am
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

This comes as kind of a shock to me. I realize he was injured but he still had a lot of good hockey left in him. Chris shall be missed.



Since: Aug 11, 2006
Posted on: August 20, 2011 11:24 am
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

So he retires but his salary still counts against the Cap?? However, you can send someone to the minors( Wade Redden I believe) but then it doesn't count against the cap. what am i missing here?? Why don't the Rangers just send him to their minor league team, Binghampton, I think, and then let him retire. You guys can fill me in on what I'm missing here. thanx, from Hondo  (Guelphfan)Undecided
Hey, I resent that remark.  I live in Binghampton....or as we like to spell it Binghamton.  *L  We're pretty irrelevant actually, we used to the Rangers AHL affiliate, now we're the Senators.  We have to have something here, it's the fifth most depressing city in America.  And I use that "city" term VERY loosely.

On a side note, if you're fond of Drury WHY on EARTH would you want to send him to Binghamton?  That's a fate worse than death.  The only reason I'm here is because my wife wants to be close to her family.




Since: Sep 5, 2006
Posted on: August 20, 2011 12:23 am
 

Chris Drury announces retirement after 12 seasons

One of my favorite players of all time.  Hated when the Avs traded him.  Will be missed.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com