NHL Stars Likely Entering Their Final Playoffs
The NHL playoff picture is almost set, and stars like Daniel Alfredsson and Teemu Selanne could be entering their final playoffs. But they are not the only playoff-bound players who could retire after this season. Here is a list of the current and former NHL star players who are likely entering their final playoffs.
Teemu Selanne, Anaheim Ducks
Selanne is one of the greatest players of all time.
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Teemu Selanne was ready to retire if the entire season was canceled because of the lockout, and given his play in 2013, it appears the Finnish Flash has lost a step. Through 43 games, Selanne is a 0.53 point-per-game player after posting a .80 average in 2011-12. Selanne is currently sidelined with a lower-body injury, and that could limit his effectiveness going forward.
The Finnish Flash is a first-ballot Hall of Famer and a player who will be sorely missed once his career is over. At 42 years old, Selanne likely will call it quits after the season.
Roman Hamrlik, New York Rangers
Hamrlik's lack of speed hurts in the Rangers' system.
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Roman Hamrlik was claimed off waivers as a member of the Washington Capitals by the New York Rangers, and he is the NHL's active leader in games played. Hamrlik has only played in limited games for the Rangers and has been a healthy scratch as of late.
Hamrlik was the No. 1 pick overall at the 1992 NHL draft, and he won a gold medal at the 1998 Olympics with the Czech Republic.
Hamrlik's lack of mobility makes him a defensive liability on the ice, and at age 39, his career is likely over. The three-time All-Star has had a lengthy career, but it is time for him to hang up his skates.
Radek Dvorak, Anaheim Ducks
Dvorak was once one of NHL's most elusive forwards.
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Radek Dvorak was signed late in the season by the Anaheim Ducks, and since joining the team, he hasn't contributed much. Dvorak had some of his best years with the Florida Panthers, and video-game fans will remember that he was always one of the fastest players in EA's NHL series.
He may be a veteran of over 15 seasons in the league, but there is a reason he went unsigned for most of the season. He is likely in his last playoff run as an NHL player.
Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Senators
"Alfie" has been captain since 1999.
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Daniel Alfredsson is the captain of the Ottawa Senators and has appeared in over 1,100 games to date. Throughout his career, Alfredsson has been a consistent contributor, and his 0.94 point-per-game average reflects that. He is in the final year of his contract, and the 40-year-old winger likely will call it quits upon the completion of the Senators' season.
There are so many accolades for Alfredsson, and you can only think that the team will go all out to try and help him win a Stanley Cup.
Alfredsson has been a class act throughout his career, and it will be a sad day when he hangs up his skates for the last time.
Saku Koivu, Anaheim Ducks
Koivu is a classy leader.
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Saku Koivu is in the final year of his contract, and after a very hot start to the season, he has cooled down.
Throughout his career Koivu has been a warrior who battled through injuries, overcame cancer and has been known by fans as one of the NHL's classiest players. The Ducks are ready for a deep playoff run, and Koivu can be a vital part of what is likely his final playoff run.
Koivu will go down as one of the NHL's top two-way players, and it wouldn't be surprising to see him call it quits after this season.
Adrian Aucoin, Columbus Blue Jackets
Aucoin's howitzer of a slapshot was great during his prime.
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Adrian Aucoin is an aging defenseman for the Columbus Blue Jackets who has played in the NHL for 17 years. The 39-year-old has only four assists on the year, and it hasn't been the greatest year offensively for him.
He is not as mobile as he once was, and he isn't as useful because he isn't contributing. Since entering the league, Aucoin was known for his slapshot, but it has been ineffective this season.
He can be a valuable asset for a young Blue Jackets team in the playoffs, but this should be Aucoin's final go-round in the postseason.