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48-year old Chris Chelios returns to the NHL

Image (1) Chelios-thumb-250x166-6963.jpg for post 219

We hinted yesterday that it might happen, and it seems that it will. The Atlanta Thrashers will call up 48-year old defenseman Chris Chelios from their AHL affiliate. With Cristoph Shubert out for at least three weeks or so, the Thrashers were short on defense and have a dire need for veteran leadership. They’ll kill two birds with one stone with Chelios.

The age jokes are inevitable. The Thrashers’ youngest player, Evander Kane, wasn’t even born yet and Chelios had already won a Stanley Cup and a Norris Trophy. He doesn’t even look like a hockey player anymore; you expect a man of his... gruffness.. to be a coach or a front office guy, not some ‘geezer’ out on the ice playing with the kids. I can only imagine the reaction he’ll get once he plays in a game.

Chelios obviously still has something left in the tank, as he’s dominated the AHL all season long. His leadership and experience cannot be measured and he’ll be a vital piece in Atlanta as they fight to try and make the playoffs.

I said it last night and I’ll say it again: how ironic is it that Chelios is getting another shot in the NHL because a player half his age has a hip injury?

Also, I wonder if he still feels the same way about contraction as he did in 2004? Reporters with long memories could have a field day with those questions. (H/T to Raw Charge for that story.)