Bryan Bickell signs 1-day contract, retire with Blackhawks

CHICAGO - His legacy in a Blackhawks' sweater was sealed during a memorable 17 second stretch of hockey in June of 2013.

Now he'll take a day to make sure he retires with the franchise with whom he made his name.

On Wednesday morning the Blackhawks announced that forward Bryan Bickell will sign a one-day contract with the team so that he may retire as a member of the franchise. A news conference has been called for Wednesday morning at the United Center for the ceremonial signing.

“As any professional athlete will tell you, stepping away from the game is extremely difficult especially given my circumstances,” said Bickell in a statement released through the Blackhawks. “I’m honored to be retiring a Chicago Blackhawk—a team that has given me and my family so many great memories. I appreciate Rocky Wirtz, John McDonough and Stan Bowman for allowing me this opportunity.”

As second round draft pick of the team in 2004, Bickell spent nine of his ten NHL seasons in Chicago. He scored 65 goals and had 77 assists, but no points were bigger than his game-tying goal in Game 6 against the Bruins in the final 90 seconds of the contest in Boston.

Seventeen seconds later, Dave Bolland scored again to give the Blackhawks their fifth Stanley Cup. The sequence started by Bickell is considered one of the greatest in the history of the franchise.

Bickell was traded to the Hurricanes in the summer of 2016 and was diagnosed early in the season with multiple sclerosis. He played just 11 games in Carolina and announced his retirement this past spring.