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CHICAGO – Chris Chelios was filled with glory as No. 7 rose to the ceiling.

The former NHL great who helped the Detroit Red Wings win two Stanley Cups took the stage at the United Center this afternoon as the Chicago Blackhawks retired the same number from his decade with his hometown team.

“The day I was traded to Chicago was the biggest day of my life,” Chelios said of the deal when he left the Montreal Canadiens for the Windy City on June 29, 1990.

“I just think how special it is,” Chelios said after the ceremony. “It’s one thing to retire your shirt and it’s another thing to do it in your hometown.”

During the speech, Chelios gave a shout-out to former Blackhawk Patrick Kane, who signed with the Wings in November, saying, “That jersey looks funny on you, but grow up.”

Chelios advised Kane as he made his decision on whether to sign with the Wings this fall. Chelios played in Detroit for a decade, helping the Wings win titles in 2002 and 2008.

“I should have thanked the Ilitch family, which I forgot, but my mind was racing,” Chelios said. “I think the Ilitches know how much I appreciate my time there and how great they were to me.”

Also at the ceremony were Dennis Rodman, who played for the Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls during his career. Michael Jordan could not succeed.

“MJ is in spirit,” Chelios said of his best friend, the Bulls icon. “I’m hanging in the reeds with the jersey. We talked yesterday, he’s always been there for me. We’ll celebrate on the boat next week.”

Chelios recalled how he got to know Rodman and Jordan during his time with the Blackhawks. Both they and the Bulls play at the United Center.

“We had contact with all the bulls,” Chelios said. “Michael was out a lot, Dennis was out all the time. We could come back from training and we’d argue with them before games. Rodman was a character.”

Chelios, 62, was accompanied to the ceremony by his mother Susan. his wife, Trace; and their four children. Chelios said that Cindy Crawford was among their friends at the event.

The celebration began with a lengthy video tribute that highlighted the rough and tumble side of Chelios, who logged 2,891 penalty minutes in 1,651 career games. He first played for the Canadiens (1984-90), then moved on to the Blackhawks (1990-99), Red Wings (1999-2009) and Atlanta Thrashers (2009-10). They’ve played on acclaimed clips from the likes of Eddie Belfour and Jeremy Roenick, which naturally centers around Chelios’ decade with the Blackhawks.

“There’s no question that I was lucky when I did it with Montreal,” Chelios said. “I got to Montreal and it was like getting a Harvard degree because of the great players they had and the coaches and leaders. It made me the player I was. When I got to Chicago, I was ready to take charge.

“The trade with Detroit wasn’t my first choice, but my sister had cancer and it was the easiest way to go back and forth. Detroit, with history and great ownership — I’m glad Kaner did it now, because it takes some of the heat off me. He I am very happy that he is doing well.

Chelios summed up his career – three Stanley Cups and three original six teams – in one sentence: “There’s no question, he was incredibly lucky.”

Helen St. Jacob in hstjames@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter. @helenestjames. Her latest book is “On the Clock: Behind the Scenes with the Detroit Red Wings at the NHL Draft.” Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Books of Victory. Personalized copies are available at her email.

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