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Former Canucks defenceman Michael Del Zotto announces his retirement from the NHL

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Photo credit:Vancouver Canucks / Twitter
David Quadrelli
7 months ago
DJ MDZ is hanging up his skates.
In an Instagram post made Wednesday afternoon, former Vancouver Canucks defenceman Michael Del Zotto announced his retirement from the game of hockey.
“Today is a bittersweet day. I was fortunate enough to play 14 years of professional hockey. The blood, sweat, tears, broken bones, triumph, heartbreak and sacrifice were worth every second. So were the many amazing relationships I made along the way. Teammates, staff members and fans were among those relationships, but the most meaningful were the ones I shared with the kids I met at Ronald McDonald house during my time in Vancouver and those with the Garden of Dreams during my time in New York, especially Liam and Tavlor. As athletes, we can become consumed with each season, game period or shift, but hockey is just a game. These relationships often kept me in check and reminded me about what was most important in life. Having the opportunity to make a positive impact on others and give back to the community was the most rewarding part of my career. It is a role I will continue to cherish.
“Spending 14 years in a pressure-packed and heavily-scrutinized job feels like a lifetime in itself, one with plenty of highs and lows. I am proud of the life lessons I learned along the way. I have made many mistakes and have learned from them all. I never wanted to be just known as a hockey player. I want to be known as Michael Del Zotto, period. I am proud of who I have become today. None of this would have been possible without the unconditional love and support from my family. From the moment I put skates on at the age of 3 they were there to guide me and give me every opportunity to live out my dream. My accomplishments are just as much theirs as they are mine. This version of myself is ready to take on the next chapter of life full steam ahead. I am ready to explore the world and be challenged in new ways. Most importantly, I am excited for more time with my family and the opportunity to make up for all the quality time I’ve missed.”
Del Zotto, 33, was originally drafted by the New York Rangers in the first round with the 20th overall pick of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. After stops in Nashivlle and Philadelphia, Del Zotto signed a two-year deal with the Canucks in the summer of 2017 before being flipped to the Anaheim Ducks ahead of the 2019 trade deadline in exchange for Luke Schenn. Del Zotto appeared in 105 games with the Canucks and tallied 26 total points in the blue and green.
You may think his time with the Canucks was so insignificant that his retirement may not warrant a news post here at CanucksArmy. And to that we say, look at this no-look feed to a rookie Elias Pettersson. He got you all out of your seats at least once, and he deserves to be remembered for it damn it!

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All the best to DJ MDZ in retirement!
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