Unrestricted free agent defenceman Dan Girardi announced his retirement on Friday. He spent last season as a member of the Tampa Bay Lightning.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) September 20, 2019
Dan Girardi Retires
The Welland, Ontario native have played for the New York Rangers and the Tampa Bay Lightning over his 13-year NHL career. He has put up 56 goals and 208 assists for 264 career points in 927 career games. He signed as an undrafted free agent after stints in the OHL with the Barrie Colts, Guelph Storm and London Knights. Girardi was part of the 2005 Knights team that won the Memorial Cup.
Last season he scored four goals and 12 assists for 16 points in 62 games. Girardi missed 20 games due to injury in the 2018-19 season. He also added 12 minutes in penalties. His possession numbers were 49.9 percent Corsi and a relative Corsi of -1.6.
“I would like to thank all my coaches, family, friends, and teammates for supporting me throughout my entire hockey career,” Girardi said via Matt Teague at The Score. “I want to thank the New York Rangers for giving me a chance to fulfill my childhood dream of playing in the NHL.
“Throughout those 11 incredible years, I have made so many friends on and off the ice. I bled Ranger blue and gave it my all for my team, the city, and the Garden faithful.
“I also want to thank the Tampa Bay Lightning for helping me continue my career by giving me a chance to play for such an amazing organization, city, and fan base. The last two years in Tampa Bay have been so much fun for me and my family. I will always fondly remember my time here.”
What This Means
Girardi is 35 and ready to walk away. He still provided key minutes for the Lightning, averaging over 17 minutes a game in ice time over the last few seasons.
Tampa Bay likely parted ways with Girardi to find money for restricted free agent centre Brayden Point. The Lightning have found a way to keep most of their players despite being up against the salary cap. However, some sacrifices are now being felt.
There will also be a new look to the Tampa Bay defence as Anton Stralman left as a free agent. The pair and Ryan McDonagh came over from the New York Rangers in various trades and have been key to the Lightning’s success over the last few seasons. Former Ranger Kevin Shattenkirk has joined the team.
TAMPA, FL – OCTOBER 14: Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Dan Girardi (5) in the 2nd period of the NHL game between the St. Louis Blues and Tampa Bay Lightning on October 14, 2017 at Amalie Arena in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)