Earlier this summer, the Dallas Stars traded Ben Bishop to the Buffalo Sabres. Bishop will not play again due to chronic, degenerative injuries, but his contract still has one year remaining on it with a salary of $3.5M (including a $1M signing bonus).
Now, just a few months later, the Stars are bringing him back. The Stars hired Bishop as a player development coordinator, according to Matthew DeFranks of the Dallas Morning News. It is not clear how this will affect his contract with the Sabres yet.
The team also promoted Sam Lites to director of organizational analysis.
Bishop, 35, was one of the best goaltenders of his generation but struggled with injuries his entire career. The towering 6-7 netminder has a career save percentage of .921 in 423 regular-season appearances, was a Vezina finalist three times and went 222-128-36 across parts of 11 seasons. His most incredible performance came in 2018-19 with the Stars, when he led the league with a .934 save percentage in 46 games, including a whopping 32.2 goals saved above average.
In 2015, he led the Tampa Bay Lightning to Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, posting a .921 in 25 postseason appearances. Overall for his career, his playoff numbers were even better than in the regular season, with a .924 in 52 games.
After trying to make a comeback in 2021-22 following more than a year of rehab, he played just one game for the Texas Stars before waving the white flag and announcing his career was over. While he did not use the word retired at the time due to his ongoing contract, he will not play again. His time in hockey is not over, however, as the netminder will join a front office and begin the next chapter at a relatively young age.