New York Rangers defenseman Dan Boyle isn’t playing coy. He’s considering retiring at the end of the season.
The 39-year-old told The Record’s Andrew Gross that “nothing is for sure” yet. “You miss a lot of things,” he said referring to his two children, who are seven and five.
“At a certain point, you don’t want to miss it any more,” he said. “For some guys, it’s physical. For me, physically, I feel fine. It’s mentally, [with me] having kids and being away.”
Outside of those feelings, the veteran has had a rough season, admitting, according to The Record, that he is “struggling with his confidence” and that there is “little chance the salary cap-strapped Rangers are going to offer him a contract for next season.”
He is in the final season of a two-year deal that pays an AAV of $4.5 million.
Yet, he’s been a healthy scratch a couple of times this season, and has failed to produce offense, which is troubling for a defenseman whose specialty was his offensive prowess and strength on the power play. He has no goals and three assists through 14 games this season. He’s also being used less on the power play than at any other point in his career, with an average of just 2:06 per game, largely relegated to the team’s second unit with Keith Yandle, though, at times, that units D pairing has been Yandle and Kevin Klein.
That decline is likely to continue if he doesn’t start bringing more to the team’s man advantage.
The undrafted Ottawa native has played in an impressive 1,033 NHL games, winning the Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2004 and a gold medal with Team Canada in 2010. He’s also appeared in two All-Star Games and was named a NHL second-team All-Star twice.
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Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.