Mike Comrie’s NHL career is “on hold indefinitely” while he recovers from hip surgery. That means he expects to play again but, realistically, how likely is that? Puck Daddy thinks he should retire and Penguins general manager Ray Shero said that Comrie “might be leaning toward retirement” a few months ago.

Is this it for Mike Comrie?

Comrie had a disappointing season last year. He played only 21 games due to his hip injury. He scored only one goal (into an empty net in Atlanta) and picked up five assists.

When he signed a one-year, $500,000 deal with the Pittsburgh Penguins last summer, he was seen as low risk, potential high reward player and “a proven scorer who might be capable of playing on one of their top three lines.”

Someone here at Houses of the Hockey even called him the best free agent signing of the summer. Obviously, that optimism didn’t turn out to be true.

Things haven’t been easy for Comrie in his career, despite things starting off well.

He played 82 games for the Edmonton Oilers in 2002 and scored 60 points. He followed that up with a 51 point year in 2003. He was then traded to the Philadelphia Flyers after a dispute with Oilers management. He played only 21 games for the Flyers before he was shipped to Phoenix.

He played 80 games for the Coyotes in 2006 and scored 60 points. After another stop in Ottawa, he signed with the New York Islanders where he played 76 games and scored 49 points in 2007-2008. That was the last year Comrie played anything resembling a full season. Then things started to go downhill very quickly.

He played 41 games for the Islanders and 22 for Ottawa in 2009, totaling 63 games. He scored only 27 points that year.  He then re-signed with the Oilers and played only 43 games in 2009-2010 due to mononucleosis. He scored 21 points. He then signed with the Penguins last offseason and we all know how that went.

In his NHL career to date, Mike Comrie has recorded 365 points in 589 games.

Now, at only 30 years of age, Comrie’s career could be over. His recent health struggles will make it difficult to return to the NHL and, even if he rehabs enough to come back, will any team be willing to sign him to a contract?

“I will return to the NHL when I am healthy and able to play at the level I have come to expect of myself,” said Comrie in a statement released by himself and the NHLPA today. You have to wonder if that day will ever come. Comrie hasn’t been healthy in a very long time.

If this is it for Comrie, it’s a bit of a shame. He has the ability to be a valuable NHL player when healthy, but he was rarely healthy enough to let his ability show. He played very well in the preseason for the Penguins last year before his health once again let him down. Now it could all be over.

And now, just because we haven’t mentioned her yet and doing so is required whenever speaking about Mike Comrie: Hilary Duff.