Chris Chelios is reportedly coming back to the Red Wings -- just not as a player.
A report by Fox Sports Detroit says the 48-year-old defenseman has confirmed his retirement and will be taking on a yet-to-be-determined role in the Wings' front office.
"It looks like I'm going to stay in Detroit and take a job with the Red Wings," Chelios reportedly told a Chicago Cubs TV audience Friday while appearing at Wrigley Field to sing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" during the seventh-inning stretch -- a performance he dedicated to the late Bob Probert, a former teammate.
Chris Chelios (Getty Images)
Red Wings GM Ken Holland told the Detroit Free Press, "I don't have a title for him, but he's going to do a little player development. After '09 when I told him we weren't going to re-sign him, I told him to keep in touch. He called me in May and told me he was going to take me up on my offer."
Chelios spent most of last season in the AHL with the Chicago Wolves, but played in seven games with the Atlanta Thrashers late in the season. It marked his record-tying 26th NHL season, including parts of 10 with the Red Wings after he was acquired from the Chicago Blackhawks in 1999 at the trade deadline.
Chelios, who won Stanley Cups with the Montreal Canadiens in 1986 and with the Wings in 2002 and 2008, played in 1,651 regular-season games and totaled 185 goals, 948 points, 2,891 penalty minutes and a staggering plus-350 career rating.
He also appeared in 266 postseason games, finishing with 31 goals, 144 points and 423 penalty minutes.
Chelios was originally selected by Montreal in the second round of the 1981 draft.