Chris Drury announces retirement from NHL

Chris Drury announced his retirement Friday.

One of the legendary careers in American hockey ended in a 55-word email released by the National Hockey League Players Association.

At first glance, it hardly seems fitting that a celebratory press conference, complete with a highlight reel and flowery words from rivals, teammates, coaches and executives, never occurred.

But in the case of Chris Drury, bidding adieu to the game in a quiet manner is befitting his personality.

The NHLPA announced Drury’s retirement Friday morning. The center leaves the game having played 892 regular season games with Colorado, Calgary, Buffalo and the New York Rangers. He amassed 255 goals and 360 assists for 615 points and was minus-6. Drury played in 139 playoff games and totaled 47 goals, 42 assists, 89 points and was plus-24. He won a Cup with the 2001 Avalanche and was named the 1998-99 Calder Trophy winner.

“It was a surprise to me,” Ryan Callahan told Metro by phone Friday afternoon.

Long recognized as one of American sports’ greatest big game athletes, Drury totaled eight goals, 11 assists and 19 points in 52 games as a member of Team USA in international competition (World Junior Championships, World Championships, World Cup and the Olympics, where he earned two silver medals and a bronze), along with being a key component to the 1989 Little League World Series Champions from Trumbull, Conn.

“Throughout his career, Chris Drury was always a great competitor, a tremendous leader and teammate, and the heart and soul type of player that every team would love to have,” Rangers GM Glen Sather said in a statement.  “His commitment, determination and will to win were apparent each and every day.  Those characteristics will have a lasting impact on all those who were fortunate enough to learn from Chris over his 12 years in the National Hockey League.”

The Rangers signed Drury to a five-year, $35.250 million free-agent deal following the 2007 season with the belief that he and fellow signee Scott Gomez would seamlessly fit into a team that already had Jaromir Jagr.

Drury scored 62 goals and 151 points in 264 games with the Rangers. However, his on-ice production paled in comparison to his intangible qualities, including teaching the organization’s young players how to be NHL players.

Callahan said Drury was someone he “looked up to, tried to emulate. [He was a] pro on and off the ice. I don’t think I’d be here without Dru. Definitely, being an assistant captain to Dru helped me to be a leader.” 

Both the Rangers and Drury seemed to prepare for a separation as player’s moved into the offseason.

Drury had only played in 24 games last season due to a lingering knee injury, and the organization had embarked on a youth movement. While praising their relationship, John Tortorella noted that Drury “tried like hell but he slowed down as [the first-round playoff series against the Capitals] went on.” Tortorella added that the organization would be “going young. We’re trying to build it up again.”

Drury told reporters when asked about his future that he “just kind of take it one day at a time. I just kind of always prepare for the next practice and the next game.”

The Rangers bought out the last year of Drury’s contract on June 29. Fifty-one days later, he said goodbye.

Follow Denis Gorman on Twitter @DenisGorman.


Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.


Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…


OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…


MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.


Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."


'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.


'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."


TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.


Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.


Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.


Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”


Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.


Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.


Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…


NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.


The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.