DETROIT -- Tie Domi was a fan favorite during his playing days, when he racked up 3,515 penalty minutes in 1,020 NHL games.
Nearly eight years have passed since the 44-year-old played in the NHL, and Domi has moved on. Instead of dwelling on how much he misses the old days, he's turned his attention to his family. And while he won't be playing, Domi could find himself back in NHL rinks soon. Only this time, he'll be watching his son.
Domi is the father of 18-year-old Max Domi, who was a first-round selection (No. 12) of the Phoenix Coyotes at the 2013 NHL Draft. The 5-foot-9 center is in his third season with the London Knights in the Ontario Hockey League, where he has 46 points (18 goals, 28 assists) in 30 games this season.
"I don't," Tie Domi said when asked if he misses playing. "I enjoy being a father now and watching him figure it out. It's kind of one of those things where I had my day in the sunshine. I just like to sit back and I really appreciate how good the game is now. The speed, the skill and the talent and how everybody's working, it's a treat to be watching now."
The elder Domi said he makes himself available to his son whenever Max needs advice. Domi, who played for the Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers and Winnipeg Jets during a career that spanned nearly two decades, wants his son to realize just how fortunate he would be should the day arrives when he's playing at the sport's highest level.
"I think it's a privilege to be in the National Hockey League," Domi said. "I didn't take any day for granted when I was in it for 18 years. It's a privilege to play in the National Hockey League. It goes by fast, I tell all the kids now. Enjoy it, because it goes fast. Enjoy every day. It's a great game and it's a great living. To get paid to do something you love doing … there's nothing better."
At least for a day, Domi got to lace up his skates again and share the ice with some of the game's all-time greats Tuesday in the Alumni Showdown at Comerica Park. He scored a goal for the Maple Leafs, revenge after Chris Chelios of the Detroit Red Wings found the back of the net and slid on his back nearly the length of the ice in celebration.
"As soon as [Chelios] scored, I had to score," Domi said.
Detroit won 6-5 in a shootout, but it didn't make the day any less fun.
"Honestly, it was more fun than I imagined it would be," he said. "It was just great being around everybody. Honestly, I was honored to be a part of it."
Follow Brian Compton on Twitter: @BComptonNHL
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