St. Louis Blues goaltender and St. Louis native Luke Opilka announced today that he is retiring from professional hockey.
“I want to thank the St. Louis Blues, my hometown team, for drafting me and giving me an opportunity to pursue my dream,” said Opilka. “Unfortunately, my career ended sooner than I hoped, but I’m excited to continue my education and begin a new chapter in my life.”
Opilka, 21, was originally drafted by the Blues in the fifth round (No. 146 overall) of the 2015 NHL Draft.
Prior to being drafted, he spent two seasons with the U.S. National Development Team in the United States Hockey League (USHL) before joining the Kitchener Rangers of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).
Opilka appeared in 75 games overall with the Rangers, posting a 40-24-6 record.
While playing for Kitchener, Opilka was diagnosed with hip dysplasia.
Over the past two seasons, Opilka has gone through two major hip surgeries – one on each hip. Currently, he is still in the process of recovering and rehabilitating from his second surgical procedure.