Billerica native Tom Fitzgerald announced his retirement today, trading in his skates for a microphone. The forward will work as a studio analyst for NESN during the 2006-07 season.
"I'm very proud to retire as a Boston Bruin," Fitzgerald said in a statement. "I came to Boston with an agenda, which was to play here and live out a childhood dream. I did that and I'm very lucky and very fortunate. I took a lot of pride in wearing that sweater and I'm walking away a very happy man. I knew that I didn't want to play anywhere else this season but Boston and [GM] Peter [Chiarelli] was very up front with me. I told Peter today that there's a sense of relief and excitement for my next job down the road and my next life. Other than winning a Stanley Cup, my goals were reached here."
Over 17 years, the 38-year-old Fitzgerald played in 1,097 NHL games for seven teams. He was originally drafted by the New York Islanders in the first round of the 1986 draft. Fitzgerald scored 139 goals and 190 assists.
Last year, Fitzgerald scored four goals and six assists in 71 games for the Bruins, skating primarily on the team's fourth line.
Most recently, Fitzgerald was skating at Boston University's Walter Brown Arena in a group featuring local NHLers. He was wearing his Bruins No. 12 helmet and black and gold socks during the skates.