Longtime Montreal Canadiens captain Saku Koivu (COY-vu) has retired.

The NHL players association announced on Wednesday that the Finnish star would call it a career after 18 seasons, all but five of which were spent in Montreal. He won four Olympic medals with Finland in the Winter Olympics, including a silver medal in their 2006 loss to archrival Sweden in the final.

In a statement released by the NHLPA, Koivu says he has "been contemplating retirement for quite some time" and "very confident" in his decision.

In 1999, Koivu was chosen as the first European-born captain in Canadiens history.