As reported on the Vancouver Canucks website, Trevor Linden retired today from the National Hockey League, 20 years to the day after the Canucks drafted him with the #2 pick in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft. Linden, the long-time face of the Canucks and a pillar of the Vancouver community, played all or part of 16 of his 19 seasons in the league with Vancouver. The 38-year old Linden also played for the Montreal Canadiens, New York Islanders and Washington Capitals.
Linden leaves professional hockey with 867 points (375g-492a) in 1,382 regular season games and had a strong playoff resume with 99 points and 104 penalty minutes in 124 playoff games. Linden scored 30 or more goals 6 times, was a two-time NHL all-star, represented Canada in the 1998 Olympic Games, was the 1997 King Clancy Memorial Trophy award winner, and served as President of the NHL Players Association from 1998-2006.
More impressive than his overall career stats were his team stats with the Canucks. Linden was given the captain's "C" at age 21, at the time becoming the youngest captain in the history of the NHL (since replaced by Sidney Crosby). In his tenure with the Canucks, he became the all time team franchise leader in regular season games and assists and in playoff games, goals, assists, and points and is second in regular season goals and points (behind Markus Naslund in both categories). Any true hockey fan, and certainly all Vancouver Canucks fans, will remember Linden's contributions to the game fondly.
“Today is an emotional and exciting day for me as an athlete and a person,” said Linden. “It closes one chapter of my life, my playing career, while opening up another which I am very much looking forward to. The game of hockey has been good to me and I would like to thank my family, former teammates, coaches, managers, support staff and the incredible fans that have been so generous in their support of my career.”