Report: Kessel wants to play this season, willing to end ironman streak

Report: Kessel wants to play this season, willing to end ironman streak

Unrestricted free-agent forward Phil Kessel wants to continue his career in 2023-24 and is willing to sacrifice his ironman streak in order to find a fit, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Kessel established an NHL record by playing in his 990th consecutive game last October. His run reached 1,064 contests by the end of the regular season, but he only made four playoff appearances for the Vegas Golden Knights as they marched to the Stanley Cup.

The soon-to-be 36-year-old winger joined Vegas on a one-year, $1.5-million contract late last summer. Kessel managed 14 goals and 22 assists in Sin City while averaging 12:49 per contest – the lowest total of his 17-year career.

A reunion with the Golden Knights doesn’t seem likely, as the defending champions only have approximately $850,000 in cap space when factoring in long-term injured reserve designations, according to Cap Friendly.

Kessel has also suited up for the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Arizona Coyotes since being drafted fifth overall in 2006. He’s registered 413 goals and 992 points in 1,286 career games while winning three titles.

The Wisconsin native hasn’t missed a regular season game since 2009-10.

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