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Jay Bouwmeester Officially Retires, Shares Thoughts on Hockey Future

Jay Bouwmeester has confirmed his retirement from the NHL today. He says it’s not worth the risk to come back, but may consider coaching.

As per an article oin The Athletic by Pierre LeBrun, Jay Bouwmeester has quietly retired from the NHL. He said when asked if his retirement was official, he responded, ““I knew I was done essentially when it happened, to be quite honest.”

Related: Mike Hoffman Officially Signs With St. Louis Blues

What he’s talking about when he says “when it happened” is the time the 17-year NHL veteran collapsed on the St. Louis Blues bench during a game in Anaheim on Feb. 11, 2020. He suffered a cardiac episode. At the time, it was clear he was out for the season and discussions about his heart moving forward made it sound like he might never return, but nothing official was declared.

It’s official now.

The smooth-skating defenseman had an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) placed in his chest and while he says he’s not 100%, for the most part, feels pretty good. “I’ve generally been able to do whatever I want to do and I’ve stayed pretty active.’’

Whether or not that ability to stay active will lead him to another role in hockey is yet to be determined. He said coaching might appeal to him at some point, specifically “helping defencemen or doing something like that.” He also adds that he’d like to use the knowledge he gained from a long career but he doesn’t “really have any strong desire at this point.’”

Jay Bouwmeester Press Conference
Jay Bouwmeester Press Conference

Armstrong Comments on Bouwmeester’s Time With the Blues

Blues GM Doug Armstrong released a statement on the retirement and said of Bouwmeester, “We want to congratulate Jay on an outstanding career. He was a huge part of us creating a winning culture in St. Louis.” He adds, “The Blues organization thanks him for helping bring our first Stanley Cup to St. Louis.”

He added that outside of his hockey talent, one of the things he’ll remember most about Bouwmeester was that he was a zero maintenance guy during more than 1,200 games. He was an outstanding professional from day one and “He was a pleasure to work with.’’

Bouwmeester retires after 1240 NHL games in the regular season and 75 playoffs games. He split time between the Blues, Calgary Flames and Florida Panthers, scoring 424 points in that time.

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