Four-Time Stanley Cup Winner Chris Kunitz officially announced his retirement on Tuesday.
“I feel very fortunate to have been a part of four amazing organizations over the last 15 years.” pic.twitter.com/QEoc7iZuCG
— Chicago Blackhawks (@NHLBlackhawks) July 30, 2019
The 39 year old collected 268 goals and 351 assists in 1,022 career regular season games. Winning four Stanley Cups, three with the Pittsburgh Penguins and one with the Anaheim Ducks, Kunitz posted 93 points in 178 career postseason games.
It wasn’t an accident Kunitz ends his career with four Stanley Cups.
He was the perfect type of glue player for championship level teams, a top-6 winger who was a great teammate on and off the ice that brought great intangibles to the table with speed, smarts and physicality. You win championships with the type of player and person Chris Kunitz is. There wasn’t a classier guy in that room over his years as a Penguin.
On the ice, Kunitz’ ability to mesh with elite level talent was also something else from little things like how great he was with his wall play at hitting Sidney Crosby in stride with the puck through the neutral zone.
Kunitz had quite the career in how his prime years ended up being age 31-36. During that span he totaled at least 17 goals and 40 points in six straight seasons.
In 2013-2014, Kunitz set a career in goals (35) and points (68) at age 34, while also being a member of Team Canada that year in the 2014 Olympics. The season before was even better for Kunitz.
During the 2013 shortened lockout season, Kunitz totaled 22 goals and 30 assists in just 48 games, producing at a 38 goal, 89 point pace.
As the hands started to slip in his final two years as a Penguin, Kunitz kept finding ways to contribute.
In 2015-2016, Kunitz put up a 17 goal, 40 point season at age 36 with a +29 rating. He added 12 points in the 2016 playoffs as Pittsburgh captured a Stanley Cup.
Kunitz last season in Pittsburgh (2016-2017) saw him finally start to slip offensively where he had just a 9 goal, 29 point season but big time moments followed him once again in the 2017 postseason, scoring the overtime winner in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals to punch another ticket to the Stanley Cup Final.
Kunitz ranks ninth in Penguins history with 169 goals and is 14th in points (388). From the numbers to what he brought to the table in so many facets, Kunitz deserves to go down as one of the best left wingers in team history.