Former Columbus, Nashville, San Jose, Tampa Bay and Montreal winger Mathieu Darche announced his retirement on Tuesday….via Twitter!
(The text is small, but reads: “Time to make it official! Moving on to second career.”)
Darche, 36, had been skating and working out with New Jersey over the last month. Last week, the Devils informed Darche they wouldn’t be offering him a contract this season.
Despite heading into 2012-13 without a job, Darche was an active member of the NHLPA and played a major role in CBA negotiations during the lockout.
CBC’s Tim Wharnsby wrote about that tenuous situation back in September:
There is no guarantee that some owners and some general managers won’t hold a grudge with a union man like Darche, making it even more difficult for him to find a place to play. But the thoughtful veteran is steadfast in his belief that his time alongside his brethren and NHLPA executive director Donald Fehr will be worth it.
“You’re trying to make things better for the union,” Darche said. “I know it’s a bit of a risk. But players have done this before me in 1994 and 2004. You can go back as far as Ted Lindsay when you think of it.
“Just because I’m 35 and my career could be over if there is a long lockout, it would be pretty hypocritical of me to say let’s play because it won’t affect my salary that much and I’m at the end of my career.”
A Quebec native, Darche’s best season came with the Montreal Canadiens in 2010-11, as he scored a career-high 12G-14A-26PTS in 59 games.