Longtime NHLer Brandon Sutter announces retirement as PTO bid with Oilers falls short

After missing the last two seasons amid a battle with long COVID, Brandon Sutter's NHL comeback attempt has come to an end.

Brandon Sutter has hung up the skates after 770 NHL games. (Photo via THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson)

Comeback SZN has come to an end for Brandon Sutter.

After the Edmonton Oilers released him from his PTO on Sunday, Sutter announced his retirement from professional hockey. Sutter, who recorded one assist and averaged 13:51 TOI/GP in three preseason games with Edmonton this fall, did not play the last two seasons due to various ailments, including long COVID.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity that Ken, Jay and the Oilers organization have provided to me the past few weeks,” Sutter said.

“You need to be 100 percent healthy to compete in the NHL, and although my health continues to improve, in consideration of my health and family, I am officially retiring from hockey.”

Sutter did not contract myocarditis — a condition that causes heart inflammation — like fellow NHLers affected by long COVID, Josh Archibald and Alex Stalock.

Sutter last played during the 2020-21 bubble season with the Vancouver Canucks — recording 12 points in 43 games. He tallied 152 goals and 289 points in 770 career NHL games, splitting his time between the Carolina Hurricanes, Pittsburgh Penguins and Vancouver Canucks organizations.

In his prime, Sutter was a lower-end second-line center who continuously boasted strong underlying metrics. He eclipsed the 20-goal mark twice and reached the 40-point plateau once.