Damphousse retires after 18 seasons

TORONTO -- The NHL lost the second of its top eight active leaders in games played in as many days.

Vincent Damphousse announced his retirement Wednesday, one day after New Jersey Devils captain
Scott Stevens called an end to his 22-year career.

"I loved getting up every morning and heading to the rink, and I will miss being in the dressing room with the guys," Damphousse said in a statement released by the NHL Players Association, where he now serves as vice president.
"However, I'm looking forward to the next stage of my life."

The futures of veteran free agents Mark Messier, Ron Francis and
defenseman Al MacInnis -- who are first, second and sixth,
respectively -- also are in doubt.

Eighth on the list of games played among active players with
1,378, Damphousse began his 18-year career in 1986 with Toronto, which drafted him sixth overall prior to that season.

A four-time All-Star who registered 12 career hat tricks,
Damphousse is 30th on the all-time assists list with 773. His
432 goals gives him 1,205 points, good for 38th all-time.

Damphousse, who also played with Edmonton, Montreal and San
Jose, has surpassed the 20-goal plateau 12 times, including a
career-high 40 with the Canadiens in 1993-94. The previous
season, the 37-year-old former Montreal captain helped the club
to its 23rd Stanley Cup championship.

After recording 12 goals and 29 assists with the Sharks in
2003-04, Damphousse signed a one-year contract with Colorado but never played for the Avalanche due to the NHL lockout. A free agent again this summer, the Montreal native had discussions
with Pittsburgh last month with hopes of continuing his career.