Colorado Avalanche captain Adam Foote announced today that he is retiring from the game of hockey at the conclusion of the 2010-11 season. Foote is expected to play his final NHL game this Sunday afternoon against the Edmonton Oilers at Pepsi Center.
“Like every boy’s dream growing up in Canada, my goal was to play one game in the National Hockey League,” said Foote. “After 20 years and over 1,000 games, I feel fortunate to be a part of this great game for so long.”
Foote, 39, is wrapping up his 19th season in the NHL, his 17th with the Avalanche/Nordiques franchise. He was a member of Colorado’s 1996 and 2001 Stanley Cup championship teams and helped the franchise capture an NHL-record nine consecutive division titles from 1995 to 2003. Originally selected by Quebec in the second round (22nd overall) of the 1989 Entry Draft, Foote has appeared in more regular season (966) and playoff games (170) than any other defenseman in franchise history.
“Adam was a warrior, a player who gave it everything he had every night,” said Avalanche President Pierre Lacroix
. “He was an integral part of the team that moved from Quebec to Colorado in 1995 and established a winning tradition in Denver. We thank Adam for helping lay the foundation for this franchise.”
“We would like to congratulate Adam on a long and successful career,” said Avalanche General Manager/Executive Vice President Greg Sherman
. “His passion and determination played a key role in so many important games, series, playoff runs and championships for this franchise. We wish Adam and his family all the best.”
Foote was named team captain on Sept. 11, 2009, becoming just the second captain in Avalanche history and only the ninth in the 30-year history of the franchise. He has spent the last two seasons in that role. Foote also captained the Columbus Blue Jackets from 2005-08.
Overall, Foote has amassed 308 points (66g/242a) and 1,534 penalty minutes in 1,153 career games with Quebec/Colorado and Columbus. He ranks fifth among active defensemen in regular season games played, behind only Nicklas Lidstrom (1492), Roman Hamrlik (1310), Sean O’Donnell (1171) and Chris Pronger (1154). The veteran blueliner is a combined +99 throughout his career.
Foote also appeared in 170 career playoff games, second to only Joe Sakic (172) in franchise history. Only Lidstrom (247) has appeared in more playoff games among active D (Chris Pronger is tied with Foote for second on that list).
Foote is retiring as the second-highest scoring defenseman in Avalanche/Nordiques history with 259 points (56g/203a) in 966 games. He is a combined +129 in an Avs sweater, the second-highest plus/minus number in franchise annals behind Peter Forsberg (+210). Foote is the only remaining active NHL player who played for the Quebec Nordiques.
The Toronto native represented Canada in three Olympics, 1998, 2002 and 2006. He helped Canada win the gold medal at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. Foote won a gold medal and was named to the All-Tournament Team at the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. He also played for Canada at the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.
Prior to turning pro, Foote spent three seasons with Sault Ste. Marie, where he was named to the Ontario Hockey League’s First All-Star Team in 1990-91. He helped the Greyhounds reach the Memorial Cup in 1991.