Manny Malhotra, 32, had played in nine games in 2013 before Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis decided to end his season because of the serious eye injury he suffered in March 2011.
On top of his efforts this season, Malhotra also played in 78 games in 2011-12, five 2012 playoff contests, and was even a part of six Stanley Cup contests against Boston in 2011. However, Gillis ultimately decided to put Malhotra on the injured reserve list on Feb. 14 for the sake of his “long term health.”
Malhotra understands that, but it sounds like if it was his call, he’d still be playing.
“It’s Mike’s views and Mike’s decision…he didn’t feel that I was safe out on the ice,” Malhotra said in a Vancouver Province report. “I don’t agree with that. Again, it’s a tough call to make.
“I’m the only one who can say how I feel out there and how vulnerable I might be to a big hit. I feel confident. I felt good. I felt like I was seeing the play develop.”
At the same time, he doesn’t question Gillis’ sincerity and won’t request a trade.
“He wants to see me have a successful life post hockey,” Malhotra said.
His contract with the Canucks expires this summer, but he needs to consult with his family before he decides if he’ll attempt to extend his playing career as a free agent.