Czech veteran Rucinsky retires

Czech veteran Rucinsky retires

17 Jul 2015Dennis Mende»
 

Longtime NHL player, 3 times world champion and Olympic winner ends his career at age 44 after battle with injuries according to his club Litvinov.

 
 
 
 

According to his club HC Litvinov, Czech forward Martin Rucinsky ends his active career after 27 years of professional ice hockey at the highest level.

Starting his career in 1988-89 with Litvinov in the highest Czechoslovakian league, Rucinsky soon left a great impression and was a first-round draft pick (20th overall) by the Edmonton Oilers in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft. In the following 17 years the left winger played a total of 998 NHL games for 8 clubs - Edmonton Oilers, Quebec Nordiques, Colorado Avalanche, Montreal Canadiens, Dallas Stars, New York Rangers, Vancouver Canucks and St. Louis Blues. He collected 250 goals and 376 assists for 626 points in his longtime NHL career. Although his teams never made it far in the playoffs, he made it to the 2000 NHL All-Star game as member of the World All-Stars along with legends like Jaromir Jagr, Mats Sundin and Teemu Selänne.

In 2008 Rucinsky returned to his home country Czech Republic to play for Sparta Prague before joining home town side HC Litvinov during the 2010-2011 Extraliga season. The following season he became the team captain before acting as assistan captain for the rest of his time with Litvinov. The last season was the most successful of his club career as he won his first and last national championship with Litvinov, defeating Ocelari Trinec 4-3 in the best of seven series.

What most hockey fans will remember Martin Rucinsky for though is his international career with the Czech Republic. He won the IIHF World Championship with his country in 1999, 2001 and 2005 and crowned his career with the gold medal win at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano. He himself was part of the All-Star team of the World Cups of 1999 and 2001. After playing several games for the national team after a 9 year break ahead of the 2015 World Championship in Czech Republic, injuries kept him from playing the tournament.

Rucinsky announced that he wants to return to the hockey world in a non-active role after a longer break.

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