Former NHL goaltender Ray Emery drowned while swimming in his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario, on Sunday. He was 35. According to the Hamilton Police Department, Emery was reported missing just after 6 a.m. Sunday in Hamilton Harbour, which is on the western tip of Lake Ontario. His body was recovered in proximity to where he was last seen later in the afternoon, police said. The cause of death will be confirmed following an examination.
“They went out for a swim, and unfortunately, he did not emerge after diving in,” police Inspector Marty Schulenberg told The Hamilton Spectator. “We responded along with Hamilton Fire and EMS. Unfortunately, our efforts on the water and in the area just around the piers were met with negative results.”
Emery was an Ottawa Senators fourth-round draft pick in 2001. Over 11 NHL seasons, he played for the Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Anaheim Ducks and Chicago Blackhawks. Nicknamed “Razor” for his aggressive style, Emery helped the Senators to the Stanley Cup Final in 2007 and won a Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2013 as a backup to Corey Crawford. Emery last played in the NHL in the 2014-15 season for the Flyers, though he played one more professional season in the American Hockey League and in Germany’s DEL. He had a career NHL record of 145-86-28 with 16 shutouts and a 2.70 goals-against average.
Emery battled avascular necrosis, the same serious hip ailment that ended two-sport star Bo Jackson’s career. Emery played in Zac Rinaldo’s charity hockey game Saturday night in Hamilton. Emery dealt with off-ice problems throughout his career, including an incident of road rage, assault of a trainer in Russia and behavior that led to him being sent home from Ottawa’s training camp. Emery spent a total of seven seasons in the Senators organization. With Ottawa, he sometimes found himself in hot water, including the day he missed a team flight. Another time he fought his pal, Brian McGrattan, during practice.