Jets defenceman Dustin Byfuglien considering retirement from NHL

Almost a week after granting Dustin Byfuglien a leave of absence, Sportsnet has learned that the Jets defenceman may be considering retirement. Jets Insider Sean Reynolds joins Danielle Michaud to discuss the situation.

Winnipeg Jets defenceman Dustin Byfuglien is considering retirement from the NHL, sources tell Sportsnet.

The Jets announced on Sept. 13 that the 34-year-old blue-liner had been granted a leave of absence but declined to give a reason for Byfuglien’s time away from the team.

“I met with Buff yesterday and we had some conversations and in the conversations, he indicated that he needed some personal time,” Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff told reporters last week via the Canadian Press.

“We certainly granted it. Dustin is a big part of our family here. There’s always an open policy for discussions. We always care about people of our family. One thing I will say, health-wise, everything is good for him and his family. But again, from our standpoint, we support Dustin and look forward to the resolution.”

Byfuglien has two years remaining on his contract with the Jets, with an average annual value of $7.6 million.

A veteran of 14 NHL seasons, Byfuglien has been with the Jets franchise since 2010-11 after being acquired by the then-Atlanta Thrashers from the Chicago Blackhawks, where he won a Stanley Cup in 2009-10.

The Roseau, Minn., native has played in 869 regular-season games, racking up 177 goals, 525 points and 1,094 penalty minutes.

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