Corey Perry is a Canadian professional ice hockey player and alternate captain for the Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has been away from the team since November 18, 2023, due to personal matters that have not been disclosed to the public. This article will provide some background information on Perry, explain his absence from the Blackhawks, and discuss the speculations and reactions surrounding his situation.
Who is Corey Perry?
- Early career
Perry was born on May 16, 1985, in New Liskeard, Ontario. He learned to skate when he was two years old and moved to Peterborough, Ontario, when he was 10. He played junior hockey for the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), where he won the Memorial Cup in 2005 and was named the tournament MVP. He also represented Canada at the World Junior Championships in 2004 and 2005, winning gold medals both times.
- NHL success
Perry was drafted by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in the first round, 28th overall, in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. He made his NHL debut in 2005 and won the Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007. He became one of the league’s top scorers and agitators, earning the nickname “Scorey Perry” and “the Worm”. He won the Hart Memorial Trophy as the league’s most valuable player and the Maurice Richard Trophy as the league’s top goal scorer in 2011, when he scored 50 goals and 98 points. He also won gold medals with Canada at the 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympics, and became a member of the Triple Gold Club after captaining Canada to gold at the 2016 IIHF World Championships.
Perry has also been involved in several controversies throughout his career, mainly due to his physical and sometimes dirty style of play. He has been suspended or fined by the NHL several times for various infractions, such as elbowing, slashing, spearing, kneeing, and head-butting. He has also been accused of cheating, diving, and embellishing penalties by his opponents and critics. He has been involved in several altercations and fights with other players, such as Ryan Getzlaf, P.K. Subban, Ryan Kesler, and Jonathan Toews.
What Happened to Corey Perry?
- Absence from Chicago Blackhawks
Perry signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Blackhawks on July 28, 2023, after winning the Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2023. He was expected to provide veteran leadership and scoring depth for the Blackhawks, who were rebuilding after a disappointing season. However, Perry has not played for the Blackhawks since November 18, 2023, when he left the team to attend to “personal matters”. He has missed six games so far and is expected to miss more in the near future.
- Personal matters
The exact nature of Perry’s personal matters has not been revealed by the player, his agent, or the team. The only official statement from the Blackhawks was made by general manager Kyle Davidson on November 22, 2023, who said: “Corey Perry remains away from the team for the foreseeable future. We ask that you respect his privacy at this time.”
- Privacy requested by family
According to some reports, Perry’s absence is related to a family issue that requires his attention and support. His wife, Blakeny, and his two children, Griffin and Lila, are said to be involved in the situation. Perry’s family has requested privacy and has not commented on the matter publicly. Perry’s agent, Pat Brisson, has also declined to provide any details, saying: “Corey is dealing with a personal matter and we ask that you respect his privacy.”
Speculations and Reactions
- Fans’ theories
Perry’s absence has sparked a lot of speculation and rumors among fans and media, especially on social media platforms such as Twitter and Reddit. Some of the theories that have been circulating include:
- Perry is having marital problems or a divorce with his wife.
- Perry is having an affair with another woman, possibly the mother of his teammate Connor Bedard, who is a rookie sensation for the Blackhawks.
- Perry is dealing with a health issue, either his own or a family member’s, such as cancer, COVID-19, or mental illness.
- Perry is facing legal trouble, such as a lawsuit, a criminal charge, or a custody battle.
- Perry is unhappy with his role or the team’s performance and wants to be traded or retire.
- Impact on team
Perry’s absence has had a negative impact on the Blackhawks, who are struggling to find consistency and chemistry on the ice. The team has lost four of the six games that Perry has missed, and has scored only 12 goals in that span. The team is currently last in the Central Division and second-last in the Western Conference, with a record of 6-13-0. The team has also missed Perry’s leadership, experience, and grit, especially in the locker room and on the power play.
- Agent’s statement contradicts GM’s
On November 27, 2023, Perry’s agent, Pat Brisson, made a statement that contradicted the one made by the Blackhawks’ general manager, Kyle Davidson, five days earlier. Brisson said: “Corey Perry is not away from the team for the foreseeable future. He is expected to rejoin the team soon. We appreciate the support and understanding from the Blackhawks organization and the fans.” Brisson did not explain why his statement differed from Davidson’s, or when exactly Perry would return to the team.
What’s Next for Corey Perry?
- Return to Blackhawks?
The most likely scenario for Perry is that he will return to the Blackhawks at some point in the near future, as his agent suggested. However, the exact date and circumstances of his return are still unclear, as neither Perry nor the team has provided any updates on his situation. It is possible that Perry will need some time to adjust and regain his form after missing several games and practices. It is also possible that Perry will face some questions and scrutiny from the media and the fans when he returns, depending on the nature and resolution of his personal matters.
- Future in NHL
Perry’s future in the NHL beyond this season is also uncertain, as he is playing on a one-year contract with the Blackhawks. Perry will turn 39 years old in May 2024, and has already played 18 seasons in the league. He has also won every major trophy and award in his career, including two Stanley Cups, a Hart Trophy, a Richard Trophy, and two Olympic gold medals. He may decide to retire after this season, or he may seek another short-term deal with the Blackhawks or another team. His decision may depend on his personal situation, his performance, and his motivation.
- Prioritizing personal matters
Regardless of what happens with his hockey career, Perry’s main priority right now is to deal with his personal matters and take care of his family. Perry has always been a private person who does not like to share his personal life with the public. He has also been a devoted husband and father who values his family above everything else. He may need some time and space to sort out his issues and find a balance between his personal and professional life. He may also need some support and understanding from his teammates, his friends, and his fans.
Corey Perry is a veteran NHL player who is currently away from the Chicago Blackhawks due to personal matters that have not been disclosed. He is a former MVP and a two-time Stanley Cup champion who has had a successful and controversial career. His absence has sparked a lot of speculation and rumors, and has affected the team’s performance and morale. His agent has said that he will return to the team soon, but his future in the NHL is uncertain. His main focus right now is to deal with his personal matters and take care of his family. He deserves respect and privacy at this time.