The DerStandard has just announced that forward Thomas Vanek has decided to retire from the National Hockey League.
The 36-year-old had made it clear on Monday morning that he would have no other choice but to hang up the skates if he didn’t get a deal done by 3 p.m. on Monday in order to be eligible to play in the 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs.
“If I don’t go anywhere today, then yes, I’m done. I’m okay with that,” Vanek said with Andrew Peters and Craig Rivet on The Instigators on Monday. “I’m happy with whatI’ve accomplished and whatever, and it’s been such a fun year being home and coaching my boys. I’m happy to be a dad at home. That’s been awesome, so no, I wouldn’t train and try to come back next year.”
He made it official on Tuesday.
Vanek has not appeared in an NHL game since March 23, 2019 while in his second stint with the Detroit Red Wings. Last season, he played in 64 games with the Red Wings, scoring 16 goals and registering 20 assists for 36 points.
He began his 14-year NHL career with the Buffalo Sabres as the team’s first round, fifth overall, pick in the 2003 NHL Draft. He made his NHL debut in the 2005-06 season, playing in 81 games while scoring 25 goals and amassing 23 assists for 48 points.
In parts of nine seasons with the Sabres, Vanek ranks fifth in franchise history with 254 goals, 11th in franchise history with 498 points, and 16th with 598 games played.
Throughout his career, Vanek played for the Sabres, New York Islanders, Montreal Canadiens, Minnesota Wild, Red Wings, Florida Panthers, Columbus Blue Jackets and Vancouver Canucks. He has scored 373 goals and registered 416 assists for 789 points in 1,029 games.
Happy retirement, Vanek!