Brian Campbell Retires After 17 Seasons

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Defenseman Brian Campbell has decided to hang up the skates after nearly two decades of NHL experience.

Brian Campbell Retires After 17 Seasons

It has been reported that the former Blackhawk will join Chicago’s front office for the next chapter in his hockey career.

Campbell played for four different teams in his 17-year trek, starting with his tenure in Buffalo, where he played the better part of eight seasons, totaling 32 goals and 176 points in 391 games. The former Ottawa 67 took a few years to mature, as in his first 167 contests he scored just 41 points. From 2005-08 he made a name for himself in the league as one of its more up and coming offensive defensemen, notching 26 goals and 154 points in 244 games, 10th overall in scoring among defensemen in that span. His 69 power play points placed him 19th. He made his playoff debut in 2006, tallying six assists in 18 games as the Sabres came one win away from the Stanley Cup Final. In 2007, the Sabres again made it back to the Eastern Conference Finals, but lost to the Ottawa Senators in five games, with Campbell netting three goals and seven points in 16 games.

His tenure in San Jose started with a trade on February 26th, 2008 when he was dealt to the Sharks for Steve Bernier and a first round pick in the ’08 Entry Draft that turned out to be Tyler Ennis. Down the stretch for San Jose he scored three goals and 19 points in 20 games tallying seven more points in 13 postseason games, a run that lasted until Game 6 of the Western Conference Semifinals.

Campbell signed an eight-year, $57,143,000 in the summer of 2008 with the Chicago Blackhawks that paid him $7.1 million per season. In 215 games with them, he scored 117 points, helping the Hawks to a Stanley Cup Championship in 2010, their first of three in six years and their first overall since 1961. Campbell scored a goal and added five points in 19 games of that 2010 run.

The then-31-year old was one of the many cap casualties in Stan Bowman’s tenure, as he was dealt to the Florida Panthers for Rostislav Olesz, who would play just 16 NHL games after the deal. Meanwhile, Campbell had a resurgence of sorts in Florida, where he would spend five of his last six seasons, scoring 28 goals and 175 points in 376 contests, where he never missed a game in the regular season.

His first year for the Panthers was his second-best offensive season ever, scoring four goals and 53 points helping the franchise to its first playoff appearance since 2000, where they would suffer a first round defeat at the hands of the New Jersey Devils in a seventh-game double-overtime heartbreaker. Campbell did his part, tallying five points in seven games. In 2015-16, he helped Florida make it back to the playoffs but they again suffered a first round defeat at the hands of the New York Islanders, with Campbell tallying just one point in six games.

Campbell was brought back to the Chicago Blackhawks last off-season for his second stint with the organization and last year of his career. He showed his age a bit, finishing with 17 points on the year scoring five goals in 80 games. It was the lowest point total for him since 2003-04 when he didn’t even play 60 contests, signaling the beginning of the end for him as a player. He was highly touted for his even-strength defense, but that dipped this season to a 48.94% Corsi-for percentage in 80 games, including a 55.23 Corsi-against per 60 minutes. In the three seasons before in Florida combined, he was the 17th-best possession defenseman in the game among skaters that had played at least 2500 minutes. The dip could have been because of a lack of a significant role, as he bounced around with four different partners this past season.

The Strathroy, Ontario native had a pretty productive career for someone who was taken in the sixth round, 156th overall, by the Sabres. Campbell posted eight-30-plus point seasons scoring more than 10 goals once, proving to be a power play weapon. On the man advantage, he totaled four seasons of 20-plus power play points through his 1082-game resume.

Advanced statistics courtesy of Puckalytics.

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