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Former first overall pick Phillips officially retires.

He officially retires after a lengthy NHL career.

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It didn't come as much of a surprise after a press conference was announced yesterday, but National Hockey League defenseman Chris Phillips has retired after spending 18 seasons in the league, all of them as a member of the Ottawa Senators.

The Senators drafted Phillips first overall all the way back in 1996, and he would go on to appear in a whopping 1,179 NHL games for the club. more than any Senator ever, recording 71 goals and 218 assists over that stretch.

Phillips suffered a severe back injury that kept him off the ice all of last season, and it's believed this was a major factor in his decision to step away from the game of hockey, at least as a player. With the announcement of his retirement the Senators also revealed he would be staying within the organization in a front office role.

From the Senators press release:

In addition to Chris’ declaration on his playing future, the Senators announced today that Phillips has agreed to stay with the organization to work in the front office. In this position, Phillips will continue to engage with the Ottawa-Gatineau community while being involved in community programs, alumni relations and business development

We of course wish him all the best in his new role.