Brendan Shanahan is retiring from the NHL after 21 seasons and an almost certain Hall of Fame career. The 40-year-old forward announced Tuesday that he wouldn’t play again. After going through training camp with the New Jersey Devils, the team he spent his final season with, he and the club mutually parted unexpectedly shortly before opening night of the season. Shanahan, who scored 656 career goals, decided to leave the Devils in October one day after he was told there was no spot for him on New Jersey’s top three lines. He has not played this season.
Shanahan ranks 11th on the league’s career goals list and is the only player with 600 goals and 2,000 penalty minutes. The eight-time all-star also played for St. Louis, Hartford, Detroit and the New York Rangers. He won three Stanley Cup titles with Detroit. The left-winger rejoined the Devils last season after the Rangers declined to offer him a deal to return to New York for a third year. Shanahan went back to New Jersey, the team that selected him with the No. 2 pick in the 1987 draft, and agreed to a deal in mid-January. Shanahan recorded 1,354 points and 2,489 penalty minutes in 1,524 NHL games.