Marty Fried, McCarty's lawyer, cited last season's NHL lockout, a divorce that was finalized in February 2005 and a smaller contract with the Flames as reasons for McCarty's bankruptcy filing.
"He's not making the money he used to make," Fried told the Detroit Free Press in a report published Wednesday. He said McCarty now makes about $850,000 (The NHL Players' Association lists his current salary at $800,000).
McCarty listed debts to banks, credit card companies, friends, utilities, law firms and at least $185,000 to casinos in Detroit and Las Vegas. McCarty, 34, said in court filings that many of his assets are tied up in insurance polices, his NHL pension and $490,000 in business loans that are unlikely to be repaid.
"It's obviously an embarrassing situation, but as with most things, there is more to it than what it seems," McCarty said in a statement released by the Flames on Wednesday. "Because it is ongoing, I am not going to comment any more. I want everybody to know, that, as far as the gambling debts, not one cent or iota was any type of sports betting.
"It is something I was upfront with from the start. [Flames coach] Darryl [Sutter] and [Flames president and CEO] Ken King have been aware of it. It is not something I am proud of because it drags a lot of other people into this than I would want My focus is first place and the playoffs. It will work itself out the way it is supposed to. All the right steps are being taken."
The Red Wings bought out McCarty's contract in July after a lockout of NHL players canceled the 2004-2005 season. He currently plays for the Flames and has seven goals and six assists in 65 games this season.
McCarty listed his income as $2.1 million in 2003, $1.5 million in 2004 and $193,959 in 2005. According to court documents, McCarty received $538,729 from the Red Wings when they bought out his contract, but his ex-wife Cheryl received 75 percent of that -- $404,046.
McCarty's charity, the McCarty Cancer Foundation, is said to be unaffected by the bankruptcy filing. McCarty and his family founded the foundation in honor of his father, Craig, who died from multiple myeloma in 1999. McCarty serves as an unpaid director of the foundation, which has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in recent years.
The Detroit Free Press said it could not reach McCarty for comment.
Information from The Associated Press is included in this report