Brent Seabrook in a graphic posted to the Blackhawks’ website Friday.

Brent Seabrook in a graphic posted to the Blackhawks’ website Friday.

HOCKEY

Injuries force Delta NHLer Seabrook to retire after three Stanley Cups in Chicago

‘It was an honor to play the game that I love, with teammates I love, in front of fans I love’

Delta-raised NHLer Brent Seabrook has retired from pro hockey after winning three Stanley Cups with Chicago Blackhawks.

News of Seabrook, 35, leaving the game was posted to the team’s website on Friday morning (March 5).

“I am so proud to have played my entire 15-year National Hockey League career in Chicago with the Blackhawks,” Seabrook’s statement reads.

“It was an honor to play the game that I love, with teammates I love, in front of fans I love, in a city that my family and I have grown to love. After several surgeries, countless hours of rehab and training to get back on the ice at the level of my expectations, it will not be possible for me to continue playing hockey. This is what is best for me and my family.

“The love and support of my wife, Dayna, and my kids, Carter, Kenzie and Dylan has meant everything to me. My parents, Gary and Suzanne, and my brother Keith, have been behind me every step of the way and are my foundation.”

(Story continues below)

Blackhawks team doctor Michael Terry said Seabrook underwent successful surgeries on both of his hips and his right shoulder over a three-month period, from December 2019 to February 2020.

“He has worked extremely hard to recover from those surgeries but has a long-term issue with his right hip that is preventing him from playing professional hockey,” Terry stated. “We have tried all available conservative treatments, and nothing has worked well enough for him to live life as an athlete. We support his decision to prioritize his long-term physical health.”

• RELATED STORY, from 2018: NHL’s Brent Seabrook backs Harvie for Delta mayor

Team president Stan Bowman said that without Seabrook, the Blackhawks would not have three Stanley Cups over the past decade-plus.

“He concludes his career as not only one of the best defensemen in franchise history, but one the greatest Chicago Blackhawks of all time,” Bowman stated. “We cannot thank Brent enough for what he did for the Blackhawks organization, the city of Chicago and this fan base. He will always be a part of the Blackhawks family and we wish him well in his life after hockey.”

During his NHL career, Seabrook played 1,114 games, scored 103 goals and added 361 assists, starting in 2005. He was also won Olympic gold with Team Canada at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

In 2015, for the third time in five years, Seabrook brought the Stanley Cup to Tsawwassen, where he grew up.

Seabrook and his family boarded a Zamboni in the morning for a ride through the streets to South Delta Recreation Centre, where the Cup was available for public viewing and photographs with fans, and he later took to the skies for a helicopter tour of Vancouver.

Photos of that day are posted to nhl.com.

In junior hockey, Seabrook played one season with Delta Ice Hawks in 2000-01 before making the leap to the WHL’s Lethbridge Hurricanes for five seasons. Next, he played three pro games with the AHL Norfolk Admirals before being called up by the NHL Blackhawks, and never left the team, until now.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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