Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury
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Marc-Andre Fleury officially unveils his future in the NHL

Published March 30, 2024 at 2:47

Minnesota Wild's beloved goalie Marc-Andre Fleury is still enjoying his time on the ice and hinted that his NHL retirement might not be imminent.

In an interview with Jean-Francois Chaumont from NHL.com, Fleury expressed his reluctance to hang up his pads just yet.

«The door is more open today for a return than it was in September or October,» Fleury said in a French-language interview.

Earlier in the season, Fleury had indicated that he would assess his future at the end of the 2023-24 season, marking his 20th campaign in the NHL, before making a decision on retirement.

Fleury shared that he has "rediscovered the joy of playing hockey," a revelation that significantly impacts his decision-making process regarding his future plans. He expressed his desire to discuss with Wild GM Bill Guerin about the team's plans, his role, and his value to the team.

«I'd like to sit down with (Wild GM Bill Guerin) and have a chat with him,» he said. «I want to know what he thinks. What are the plans for the Wild? What are his options? What does he think about me? Am I still an asset for the team?

«We also have another good young goalie in the American Hockey League in (Jesper) Wallstedt. He's been playing in (the AHL) for two years now. I'll need to know Bill's plans.»

The Wild has benefited from having Fleury as a backup to Filip Gustavsson, with Fleury securing 16 wins in 36 appearances, along with an .899 save percentage and 2.85 goals against average.

Regarding Fleury's potential return for another season, GM Guerin expressed openness to the idea.

«I'm more than open to the possibility of seeing him coming back for another season, 100%,» he said. «We'll talk about it in the next few days. He's still having a good season. I think he's still got hockey in him if he wants. There's still some gas left in his tank.»

Fleury, in his second full season with the Wild after being traded from the Chicago Blackhawks in 2022, is currently on the final year of his two-year, $7-million extension with the team. Despite the possibility of being traded at the deadline, Fleury opted to remain in Minnesota due to his confidence in the team's playoff prospects.

Yeah, it's probably Minnesota or retirement,» he said.

«If I come back, I'd sign a one-year contract. And then, we'll figure it out from there.»

He mentioned his willingness to sign a one-year contract with the Minnesota Wild if he decides to play, leaving future decisions open for discussion.

As of now, the Wild is trailing the Los Angeles Kings by eight points, who currently hold the last Wild card playoff spot in the Western Conference.

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Marc-Andre Fleury officially unveils his future in the NHL

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