NHL veteran Kris Versteeg has announced his retirement from hockey. The 33-year-old has not played in the NHL since 2017-18. He had been playing in various leagues overseas or with the Rockford Icehogs of the AHL. The Athletic’s James Mirtle announced the news Tuesday morning.
Kris Versteeg announces his retirement. Only played 53 games for the Leafs, but they were memorable. All the best to him.
— James Mirtle (@mirtle) April 14, 2020
Kris Versteeg Retires
Versteeg’s last NHL season was with the Calgary Flames in 2017-18. He was a marginal player on that team with three goals and eight points in just 24 games. Versteeg played for three different teams in 2019-20 including Team Canada for the Spengler Cup. He was productive for the Canadian team with three goals and five points in four games. Versteeg also played briefly for the Chicago Blackhawks‘ AHL affiliate in Rockford with one assist in six games.
The Boston Bruins originally drafted Versteeg in the fifth round of the 2004 Draft. His best season came in 2008-09 with Chicago. That was the year that Versteeg scored 22 goals and 53 points in 78 games. He also placed third in Calder Trophy voting that season. Versteeg’s career totals were 149 goals and 358 points in 643 games. He also scored 18 goals and 48 points in 93 playoff games.
How Versteeg Will Be Remembered
Versteeg will be remembered as a productive bottom-six skater. He won’t be in the conversation for the Hall of Fame but he still had a very solid 11 seasons split between seven teams. The Blackhawks will remember Versteeg as someone who helped them win two Stanley Cups. Fifth-round skaters aren’t typically known for being major contributors, but Versteeg made the most of his skills. Versteeg was a steady performer who could be counted on for 30 or more points almost every season while he was in the NHL. He was also a very good possession player with an above-average career Corsi For of 52.9 percent. Most fifth-rounders can only dream of Versteeg’s career. He maximized his talent every time he skated. That is worth celebrating.
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