Howard 'probably not' re-signing with Red Wings, doesn't want to retire

Michael Martin / National Hockey League / Getty

Jimmy Howard is leaning toward leaving the only NHL franchise he's ever played for.

The Detroit Red Wings goaltender will "probably not" play for the club next season, he told Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman on Sunday.

Howard, who's a pending unrestricted free agent, added that he's not planning to retire.

"Someone is going to have to tell me I can't play anymore," he said, adding that 2019-20 isn't the way he wants to end his career.

The 36-year-old also said he's been training for the last two months and that he talked to his family about relocating for a year if he can't play for a team close to home.

Howard struggled mightily this past season, posting a save percentage of .882 (the worst mark in the league among goalies who played at least 27 contests) and minus-22.12 goals saved above average to go with his 2-23-2 record.

He's spent his entire 14-year NHL tenure with the Red Wings, who drafted him 64th overall in 2003.

If Howard elects to hit the market, he'll join a crop of free-agent goaltenders that could include Anton Khudobin, Robin Lehner, Jacob Markstrom, Thomas Greiss, Corey Crawford, and Braden Holtby.

Howard 'probably not' re-signing with Red Wings, doesn't want to retire
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