Martin Brodeur decides to retire

ByPierre LeBrun ESPN logo
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The NHL's all-time winningest netminder, Martin Brodeur, has decided to retire and will join the St. Louis Blues' front office, the team announced Tuesday.

Brodeur played for the Blues this season after an injury to Brian Elliott spurred the Blues to sign the veteran goalie, who was an unrestricted free agent after sitting out the first few months of the season.

Once Elliott returned earlier this month, however, it dropped Brodeur to a No. 3 role. He left the club two weeks ago to think about his future.

The Blues will hold a news conference Thursday to officially announce the retirement, but team president and general manager Doug Armstrong said Tuesday that Brodeur will stay with the organization in a management role.

The 42-year-old Brodeur, a future first-ballot Hall of Famer, also has an open invitation from New Jersey GM Lou Lamoriello for a front-office position with the Devils, with whom he spent the previous 21 seasons.

Brodeur won 688 of his 691 career victories with New Jersey, and hoisted the Stanley Cup on three occasions, in1995, 2000 and 2003.

"Marty and I have been talking certainly quite a bit. We stayed close even during the season in St. Louis," Lamoriello told on Tuesday. "Today's announcement ends one of the greatest careers that you can imagine, in so many different ways. Just look at his statistics, they will tell you about his career.

"What more can you say? He's been an ambassador for the game and will continue to be. He's had tremendous success both in the National Hockey League and internationally. He's going to go down, if not as the [best], one of the greatest goaltenders ever."

He won 113 career playoff games with New Jersey, second only to Patrick Roy (151).

"Marty and I spoke. He has a position here whenever he wants it," said Lamoriello, who also said that he talked with Armstrong. "He's been with the Blues this year, he's established a relationship. They asked him to stay with them and work with them and I certainly understand that.

"He wanted to make sure it wasn't anything that anybody was uncomfortable with here. But it's as close to finishing the year as a player by being part of them the rest of the year. That's Marty. He's going to do that for the rest of the year. He'll be back here, in my opinion, as long as he wants."

Brodeur appeared in seven games for the Blues, going 3-3-0 with a 2.87 goals-against average and .899 save percentage. He also had one shutout to increase his NHL record to 125.

And he never once worried about how others would view his legacy by continuing to play this season.

"I don't really care," Brodeur said before his first game with the Blues. "It's all about me. ... People will judge me for whatever they want to judge me on, if it's me coming back and trying something here in St. Louis and trying to have fun and have a chance to win the Stanley Cup or [thinking he] should have retired five years ago.

"A lot of people thought I wasn't going to make the NHL, so I'm living this dream, and when you are living this dream ... you really enjoy what you do. It's hard to let it go sometimes."

The 10-time All-Star finishes with a 691-397-176 record -- 140 more wins than Roy, who is No. 2 all time. Brodeur also captured the Vezina Trophy -- given to the league's top goaltender -- four times.

He also is a two-time Olympic gold medalist with Team Canada in 2002 and 2010.

Brodeur has played 1,266 career games -- also first all time among goaltenders -- and finishes with a .912 save percentage and a 2.24 goals-against average.

Katie Strang of contributed to this report.

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