(Photo Credit: Reuters)

By: Mike Cratty                                        Twitter: @Mike_Cratty

Yesterday, via his Twitter account (@MSavvy91), former Boston Bruins forward Marc Savard announced his retirement from professional hockey at 40-years-old.

Thanking the numerous organizations that he played for, Savard wraps up a tremendous career that was unfortunately cut short due to concussion troubles. It was really a shame that Savard’s career had to end the way it did when it did. One of the league’s premier playmakers, one of my favorite hockey players at the time, and one of my beloved Bruins ever, Marc Savard had a severe impact on the game of hockey. He brought some lethal speed, vision, and hands to the table that made him a pain to play against.

After tearing up the OHL in the mid to late 1990’s with the Oshawa Generals, Savard was drafted by the New York Rangers in the fourth-round of the 1995 NHL Entry Draft, 91st overall. Most fans probably recognize Savard by his jersey number, 91. Marc made his way from the Rangers to the Calgary Flames, Atlanta Thrashers, Boston Bruins, as well as the Florida Panthers and New Jersey Devils while he was sidelined due to concussions.

He was known for racking up the assists more than goals, most notably shown from 2005 to 2007 within two seasons, first with the Atlanta Thrashers, second with the Boston Bruins. In his final season with the Thrashers in the 2005-2006 season, Savard established what went on to be his career best season with 28 goals and 69 assists, good for 97 points in 82 games. He followed that up just a season later, now after signing a four-year/$20 million deal with the Boston Bruins. Just a point shy of his career high, Savard scored 22 goals and added 74 helpers, good for 96 points. To sum it all up, Marc Savard was pretty good at distributing the puck.

Savard’s full career statistics can be seen here: http://www.eliteprospects.com/player.php?player=8574

The famous scumbag we all know and hate, Matt Cooke had a great deal to do with Marc Savard’s concussion troubles. This hit may be tough for some to watch, but this is what turned Savard’s hockey career and life in general upside down.

(Video Credit: HockeyArchive: YouTube Channel)

A dirty, malicious hit from a dirty, malicious, god-awful hockey player in Matt Cooke. A guy that truly wasn’t worthy of playing professional hockey anywhere ruined the career of one of the NHL’s great star players.

A hit from Matt Hunwick, at a point where Savard eventually came back from the aftermath of that Matt Cooke cheapshot, didn’t help things.

(Video Credit: HockeyArchive: YouTube Channel)

Not nearly as dirty of a hit as the Matt Cooke one, but not a great-looking hit either. Especially on a guy with concussion problems like Savard.

Despite not being able to suit up, Marc Savard did rightfully get his name on the Stanley Cup despite missing the majority of the Bruins Stanley Cup winning 2010-2011 season. When the 2010-2011 season was over, and the Bruins had the cup in their grasp, Marc Savard never played a professional hockey game again.

Savard’s career as a Bruin came to an end in 2015 when his contract rights were traded along with Reilly Smith to the Florida Panthers in exchange for Jimmy Hayes.

Past the negatives, Savard’s love for the game can all be seen in my favorite hockey moment of all time.

(Video Credit: NHL: YouTube Channel)

Over time winner in the playoffs, doesn’t get much better than that. The pure jubilation and excitement from Savard as he taps his stick frantically onto the ice, and tosses it into the stands at TD Garden is truly unreal. Savard picks up the loose puck, or maybe, in this case, the tumbling muffin as Jack Edwards might say and snipes it past Brian Boucher, sending TD Garden into bedlam.

Marc Savard was a player that I tried to model my own game after the best I could, among others. He was truly a pleasure to watch, and his skills and accomplishments won’t be forgotten in retirement. He’ll probably with a professional team in some capacity in the near future. Thank you, Savvy for all of the great memories and fun. A true Bruins legend.