Red Wings’ Chris Osgood retires after 17 seasons in the NHL
Chris Osgood’s long and winding road in the NHL has finally come to an end.
The 38-year-old keeper announced his retirement from hockey in Detroit Tuesday morning, bringing an end to his 17-year playing career. He moves on to a new job within the Red Wings organization.
The Peace River, Alberta-native won three Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings, who originally drafted Osgood in the third round, 54th overall, in 1991. He suited up for 744 NHL games in his career, spending two stints with the Wings, as well as playing for the Blues and Islanders.
He would serve as the starter for two of his three Cup wins, in 1998 and 2008 and served as Mike Vernon‘s back-up on Detroit’s 1997 Cup-winning team. He also took the Wings to Game Seven of the 2008 Cup finals, where they would lose to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Osgood’s numbers rank amongst the all-time leaders amongst NHL goalies, despite fighting for a starting job for portions of his career.
Still, the numbers piled up. He ranks amongst the all-time leaders in regular-season wins (401, 10th all-time), shutouts (50, tied for 24th), goals-against average (2.49, 24th).
Osgood is also one of only five goalies to have scored a goal in an NHL game by actually firing the puck into the opponent’s net, doing so against Hartford on March 6, 1996.
His playoff success, of course, make Chris Osgood a curious case for the Hall of Fame.
He had three Stanley Cups, a 2.09 career playoff GAA and a 74-49 record. He was as steady as they come and one of the best postseason goalies of his generation.
Combine that with 401 wins, putting him No. 10 all-time in the regular season, and it’s going to be an interesting call for the Hall.
What Osgood is, we think, is the Glenn Anderson of goaltenders. Tremendous postseason success, both as a driving force and as a passenger for Cup teams, and playoff stats that are among the best in NHL history. Their regular-season numbers are well above average and Osgood’s win total puts him on another level among goaltenders. Both benefitted from playing with elite talent.
Was Glenn Anderson ever the best player in his team? No, and neither was Osgood. Was Glenn Anderson ever one of the five best players in the NHL? No, and neither was Osgood. Did Glenn Anderson ever win a major individual award? No, and neither did Chris Osgood.
They both fail the “eyeball” test, yet both have the numeric and championship-level impact that charms HOF voters.
Which is to say that both players were really, really, really good … just not immortal.