Wade Redden Retires

USATSI_7266903_154158418_lowresWade Redden has announced his retirement from the NHL. The veteran defenceman made the announcement Thursday.

“I would first and foremost like to thank my family and friends for their unconditional love and support. I would also like to thank my teammates, coaches and staff for all the great memories created throughout the years. To the fans, I appreciate all your support throughout my career,” Redden said in a statement. “Playing in the National Hockey League has been a dream come true and I feel very proud and privileged to have played more than 1,000 games in 14 NHL seasons.”

The 36-year-old spent last season on the St. Louis Blues and Boston Bruins before his contract was bought out by the New York Rangers.

In his 14 years with the NHL, Redden played for the Ottawa Senators along with the Blues, Bruins and Rangers. He finished with 457 points in 1,023 games.

The Saskatchewan native was the second pick overall of the New York Islanders in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft. He was traded to the Senators in a deal that sent Bryan Berard the other way. Berard was selected first in the same draft by Ottawa, but the club was unable to get a deal inked.

Redden made the Senators out of his first training camp and scored his first NHL goal on his first NHL shot, beating Montreal’s Jocelyn Thibault.

Redden would spend the first 11 seasons of his career with the Senators. He was their go-to guy and the club even picked him over Zdeno Chara after running into cap troubles following the 2005-2006 NHL season.

Redden was rewarded with a big contract, but soon after the team began making moves to trade him. Bryan Murray first tried to move Redden during the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, hoping to package the blueliner up for the Edmonton Oilers. Redden turned the trade down, subsequently beginning a difficult period that he quite frankly never got over.

The Senators were beginning to slump in the standings, even as Redden’s numbers remained solid, and focus began to turn to the size of his contract. As the 2007-2008 season drew to a close, Redden said that he would take a pay cut to stay in Ottawa but it was not to be. In July of 2008, he signed with the Rangers. His play declined and he was even sent to the minors.

This revolving door of disappointments eventually found Redden dealt to the Bruins, where he was expected to possibly rekindle the fire with Chara. It was not to be.

Through it all, Redden never complained about being demoted to the minors. His heart was always in Ottawa, however, no matter what sweater he wore.

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