Former Boston Bruins Defenseman Andrew Ference Retires From Hockey
One of the leaders from the 2011 Stanley Cup winning team is walking away from hockey.
Defenseman Andrew Ference announced his retirement from the NHL on Thursday. Since leaving Boston he went to play for his hometown Edmonton Oilers and has played there since the 2013-14 season.
Ference played for the Boston Bruins from the 2006-07 up until the 2012-13 season. During that time the 38-year-old left-shot defenseman played in 373 games in 7 seasons recording 94 points, 278 PIM, +24 +/- and averaged 20:01 minutes per game for the B’s.
In his press release, Ference talked about his family. But at the end, he thanked the teams he played for including the Boston Bruins.
“As I graduate from my time of playing in the NHL, I realize I have the problem of being unable to properly thank the hundreds of people who have helped me achieve my goal of playing in the best league in the world. No one gets here on their own, especially average sized guys with average skills. If you think you deserve a thank you from me, you probably do…Thanks!”
“My girls, Ava and Stella, and my wife, Krista, however do deserve a proper thanks and my infinite gratitude. They tended my broken bones and bruised ego more times than I can count and gave me unending love and support even when I missed a Christmas concert for a road trip.”
“My parents and sister didn’t teach me a lick about skating or shooting but they did teach me a ton about life off of the ice. Because of their lessons, I leave the game having a lot of pride in what I accomplished away from the rink in the great communities where I played.”
“Lastly, thank you to Pittsburgh, Calgary, České Budějovice, Boston and Edmonton. Your love of our sport provided me with an incredible stage to play on and your cities will always feel like home to me. Hockey fans really are amazing!”
Ference was a big part of the 2010-11 Stanley Cup winning team playing all 25 games in the playoffs scoring 4 goals and 6 assists with a +10 +/- and averaged 20:37. One of his most memorable moments of that Stanley Cup run was when he scored a goal on Montreal and gave the camera the middle finger.
At the time he played it off as an equipment malfunction to avoid getting in trouble, but he later owned up to it in a blog post letting it known why he did it.
“Accountability is lacking in our world. Just look at nuisance lawsuits, or the finger-pointing of politicians around the globe. I am guilty myself of trying to blame a middle-fingered celebration after a goal in Montreal on a glove malfunction. In round one of the playoffs between two of the fiercest rivals in our sport, I scored a tying goal in the enemy’s building, only to have my fist pump turn into a sign language that crosses all borders. Facing the media and a possible suspension after the fact proved to be too much for my self-accountability. Self-preservation is a powerful thing … it is easier to place blame elsewhere and overlook your own responsibilities.”
Ference will be remembered in Boston as a leader and a big contributor to the 2011 Stanley Cup team. While he hasn’t played in Boston for four seasons, his presence on the team was clearly missed after he left for the Oilers. While he may not be a Hall of Famer, he should be remembered as one of the better Boston Bruins defensemen in the modern era.