Published November 20, 2014
Kariya, who had 402 goals and 989 points in 989 career games during a decorated 15-year career, did not play last season as he attempted to recover from a concussion.
He released the following statement through his agent, Don Baizley:
"Today, I announce my retirement from professional hockey. I would like to thank all of those who have been part of so many great memories -- my teammates, coaches, team management and staff. I am also very grateful for the support I have received over the years from the fans, especially those in Anaheim, Colorado, Nashville, and St. Louis. It was my dream to be a professional hockey player in the NHL from my minor hockey days in North Vancouver and Burnaby, through junior hockey in Penticton, college hockey at the University of Maine, and the Canadian National Team. I would not have achieved it without support from all of these people and organizations."
Drafted by Anaheim with the fourth pick in the 1993 Entry Draft, Kariya became a star with the expansion Mighty Ducks. He had two 100-point seasons and one with 99, and was a three-time First Team NHL All-Star.
Kariya teamed with Teemu Selanne to form one of the most potent 1-2 combinations in hockey, and, along with the Disney movie series, helped Anaheim become a popular franchise in its infancy. He won the Lady Byng Trophy twice for his gentlemanly play, and represented Canada in the Olympics twice -- once as an amateur in 1994 and again on the gold-medal winning team in 2002.
After coming within one victory of the Stanley Cup with Anaheim in 2003, he joined Colorado for the 2003-04 season. Kariya then spent two successful seasons with Nashville before signing with St. Louis for his final three years in the League. He had six 80-point seasons -- the last coming in 2005-06 with the Predators.