A surgical stapling device is disclosed for performing circular anastomoses. The surgical stapling device includes a handle portion, an elongated body portion and a head portion including an anvil assembly and a shell assembly. The anvil assembly includes a tiltable anvil which will tilt automatically after the device has been fired and unapproximated. The anvil assembly of the stapling device also includes a retainer clip positioned on the anvil head. The retainer clip includes at least one resilient arm which is positioned to engage a cutting ring during unapproximation of the stapling device.