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Sekera retires from NHL after 16 seasons

Glenn James / National Hockey League / Getty

Veteran defenseman Andrej Sekera retired from the NHL after 16 seasons Monday.

"My hockey career is over," Sekera told Slovakian newspaper SME, per "I've had some offers as a free agent, but still, I decided to quit.

"A big reason was my son had some medical issues during the last year. After everything we went through, I realized the best (thing) would be if I devoted more time to my family. I thought maybe it would turn around somehow, but that did not happen."

Sekera spent the first seven years of his career in Western New York after being drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the third round in 2004. Following brief stints with the Carolina Hurricanes and Los Angeles Kings, he joined the Oilers in 2015 and spent four campaigns in Edmonton. He played for the Dallas Stars in his final three seasons.

The 6-feet, 200-pound blue-liner skated in 842 career games, registering 253 points. Sekera only recorded three seasons of at least 30 points, but he was criminally underrated during his prime years.

Sekera didn't win a Stanley Cup in his career, but he came close in 2020 with the Stars, losing to the Tampa Bay Lightning in the final.

The 36-year-old also represented Slovakia at numerous international events, notably taking home a silver medal at the 2012 World Championship.

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