After leaving the Detroit Red Wings organization to be closer to his family in his hometown of Chicago, Chris Chelios was named an ambassador for the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday.
“To be able to join the Blackhawks organization in this role means everything to me,” Chelios said in a statement. “I’m very thankful to (owner) Rocky Wirtz and (president) John McDonough for this opportunity to return to the Blackhawks. Chicago is my hometown and returning to this organization is very special to me and my family.”
Chelios spent a decade with the Red Wings as a player from 1999-2009, and he also was an adviser for the team. Montreal drafted him 40th overall in 1981 and he played for the Canadiens from 1984-1990 before being traded with a second-round draft pick to Chicago for Denis Savard.
Chelios won two of his three James Norris trophies as the league’s best defenseman and was named an All-Star seven times with Chicago. He ranks fourth all-time in goals, assists and points among Blackhawks defenseman.
He was traded to rival Detroit in March 1999 for Anders Eriksson and two first-round draft picks. Chelios remained with the Red Wings through the 2008-09 season before finishing his career with a brief stint with Atlanta in 2009-10. He won Stanley Cups in 2002 and 2008 with Detroit.
Chelios was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in November 2013.
Chelios joins legends Tony Esposito, Bobby Hull, Stan Mikita and Savard as ambassadors representing the Blackhawks at the United Center and at events throughout Chicagoland. The team said Chelios will be introduced at the Blackhawks convention next weekend.
“We are excited to welcome Chris back to the Blackhawks family,” McDonough said. “His outstanding Blackhawks career and his passion for the game will complement the work that our current ambassadors carry out to represent the organization.”