Bruins' Cam Neely Announces Retirement

Posted: September 06, 1996

Cam Neely, the Boston Bruins' hard-hitting, high-scoring forward, tearfully announced his retirement yesterday because of a degenerative hip condition.

Doctors determined that his hip problem cannot be corrected through rehabilitation or surgery.

Neely's retirement was expected ever since he missed the last 25 games of the 1995-96 season with the hip injury.

Neely, 31, was a first-round draft pick by the Vancouver Canucks in 1983, and was traded to Boston in 1986. He went on to redefine the forward position, posting up in the slot like a basketball center, waiting for a pass while defenders tried in vain to move him away.

Neely scored more than 35 goals in each of his first five seasons with the Bruins, breaking 50 in 1989-90 and '90-91 before injuries began to take their toll. In the 1991-92 season, he played in just nine games, missing the first 38 with a thigh injury and the last four months with problems in his knee.

Rehabilitation also took up the first 60 games of 1992-93. The next season, while resting his knee as necessary, he scored 50 goals in 49 games; only Wayne Gretzky has scored 50 goals in fewer games.

* Longtime Flyers trainer and equipment manager Dave ``Sudsy'' Settlemyre has been let go by the club. Settlemyre worked for the club from 1981 to 1990 and rejoined the team in 1994.

General manager Bob Clarke would say only that it was time ``to move in a new direction.''

Settlemyre's duties will be assumed by the remaining staff.

* Buffalo signed former Flyers left winger Anatoli Semenov and right wingers Dixon Ward and Ed Ronan to one-year contracts. Financial terms were not released.

Semenov, 34, had four goals and 22 assists in 56 games last season for the Flyers and Anaheim.

* The Phantoms, the Flyers' AHL farm club that will begin play in the Spectrum this season, will put tickets on sale starting at 10 a.m. Saturday. Adult tickets will go for $9, $12 and $14. Tickets for children 14 and under will be $7.

The Phantoms open the AHL season at 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 6, against defending champion Rochester.

* Center Greg Johnson re-signed with Detroit, agreeing to a four-year contract. Johnson, 25, had 18 goals and 22 assists in 60 games.

* Backup goalie Mark Fitzpatrick re-signed with Florida, agreeing to a one-year contract. Fitzpatrick, 27, was 15-11-3 with a 2.96 goals-against average in 34 games.

BASKETBALL Rasheed Wallace of the Portland Trail Blazers was found not guilty Wednesday of using a car to block the mother of his child as she tried to leave a parking lot.

Wallace, a former player at Simon Gratz High and North Carolina, had been accused of misdemeanor assault for trying to block Chiquita Bryant in the parking lot at Toddlers Academy in Durham, N.C., on June 19. The couple's 1-year-old child is enrolled there.

* Stan Albeck, 65, a head coach with four NBA teams, joined the Atlanta Hawks as an assistant coach and scout.

* Virginia Tech basketball coach Bill Foster said he would retire at the end of the 1996-97 season. Athletic director Dave Braine said assistant coach Bobby Hussey would take over as head coach.

HORSE RACING Garden State Park will begin its 12th season of harness racing tonight. Post time for the first race at the Cherry Hill track is 7:30 p.m.

The track's 53-date meet will run through Dec. 7, with live racing on Wednesdays through Saturdays.

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