Defenseman Bryce Salvador, who played 13 seasons in the NHL, announced his retirement Wednesday.
Salvador missed the final 67 games of last season with the New Jersey Devils with a bulging disk and nerve damage in his lower back. He became an unrestricted free agent July 1.
"I just think there were a lot of factors over the last two seasons," the 39-year-old told Northjersey.com. "I could just see that the body wasn't responding as it used to and it was just getting more and more difficult to stay healthy. And the position that I was in, being the captain, this last season it was really tough to be the team leader and not be present. So I just kind of realized that even though I can play, I feel I can play and come back, I just didn't know if I'd be able to make it a full season.
"Knowing that, I just kind of really said, 'Does it make sense to put myself in that situation when the mind is still there and I feel good, but maybe the body is telling me it's time?'"
Salvador served as Devils captain since 2013.