Daley retires as player, joins Penguins as hockey operations adviser

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Trevor Daley retired as an NHL defenseman after 16 seasons on Monday and joined the Pittsburgh Penguins as a hockey operations adviser.

The 37-year-old won the Stanley Cup with the Penguins in 2016 and 2017 before playing the final three seasons of his career with the Detroit Red Wings.

In his new role, Daley will be based in Pittsburgh and report directly to general manager Jim Rutherford. He will assist the coaching staff from press level during games, as well as player evaluations at the NHL and American Hockey League levels.

“First, I would like to congratulate Trevor on an incredibly successful 16-year career,” Rutherford said. “In addition to being a Stanley Cup champion with us, he left us with a great impression due to his professional demeanor and quiet leadership qualities. Those traits, along with his desire to want to learn about the business side of the NHL, made him a great candidate to join our staff.”

Selected by the Dallas Stars in the second round (No. 43) of the 2002 NHL Draft, Daley scored 309 points (89 goals, 220 assists) in 1,058 regular-season games with the Stars, Chicago Blackhawks, Penguins and Red Wings. He scored 18 points (six goals, 12 assists) in 71 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

The Penguins acquired Daley from the Blackhawks in a trade on Dec. 14, 2015. He scored 41 points (11 goals, 30 assists) in 109 regular-season games and 11 points (two goals, nine assists) in 36 playoff games with Pittsburgh.

After the Penguins won the Cup in 2016 by defeating the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of the Final, Daley was the first player captain Sidney Crosby handed the Cup to, although Daley missed the Final because of a broken ankle. He was given the honor because Crosby knew Daley’s mother, Trudy, had cancer and had always dreamed of seeing her son win the Cup. She died nine days later on June 21 at age 51.

“One of my mom’s last images of me being on the ice,” said Daley, who became the seventh Black player to have his name inscribed on the Cup. “It’s something I’ll never forget.”

The Penguins also announced Monday they have relieved assistant general manager Jason Karmanos of his duties. Sam Ventura, their director of hockey research, will assume Karmanos’ role as assistant GM and Erik Heasley, manager of hockey operations, was named general manager of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, their AHL affiliate.

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