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Sedins to retire from NHL after 17 seasons with Canucks

37-year-old forwards to focus on family, have no regrets

by Kevin Woodley / Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin plan to leave the NHL the same way they came into the League: together.

The identical twins and lifelong linemates announced Monday they will retire at the end of the 2017-18 regular season, ending two remarkable careers that have been intertwined since the Vancouver Canucks selected them No. 2 and No. 3 in the 1999 NHL Draft.

"That draft day we expected to end up on different teams and somehow they managed to get us both," said Daniel, who wore No. 22 because he was picked second, one spot ahead of Henrik, who wore No. 33. "Throughout the years, it's always been the two of us, and I think we came in as teammates and we should leave as teammates too. That's never been a question."

Retirement was a decision the 37-year-old forwards said they arrived at in November.

"As this season went, it became clear to us this was going to be our last year," Henrik said.

The Sedins told Canucks management they were leaning toward retirement before the Feb. 26 NHL Trade Deadline but planned to wait until the season was over before finalizing it. They agreed to share their plans after meeting with management over the weekend, telling teammates before practice Monday then announcing it publicly in a letter to fans on the team website.

Video: Sedin twins announce retirement after 17 seasons

"The decision feels as good today as it did four months ago when we started talking about it," Daniel said. "That's a good sign. If we started to regret it now, it would have been a lot tougher."

They will be joined by friends and family from Sweden when they play the Vegas Golden Knights at Rogers Arena on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; SNP, ATTSN-RM, NHL.TV), will play their final home game against the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday and final NHL game at the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday. Each is in the final season of a four-year, $27 million contract.

"It feels good to celebrate these last couple of games with our families coming in," Henrik said. "And for the fans, too, to just say thanks to them."

The decision was based on, and made in consultation with, their families. In a letter to fans, the Sedins talked about it being "time to help with homework every night. It's time to be at every birthday party and to stand in the cold at every hockey rink, soccer game and riding lesson on weekends. It's time to be at home for dinner every night."

They reiterated those thoughts when they met with the media.

"It was going on the road and leaving the kids and family at home," Daniel said. "That's been the toughest part the last few years, and we want to be around a lot more."

In their 17-year careers, the Sedins helped the Canucks advance to the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, losing to the Boston Bruins in seven games, and won a gold medal for Sweden at the 2006 Torino Olympics.

"They still can play in the League for another three, four years," Vancouver center Bo Horvat said. "But I'm obviously happy for them and their families, they've had tremendous careers."

Video: Friedman on Sedins' retirement, Vegas' division title

Daniel is second on the Canucks in scoring this season with 52 points (21 goals, 31 assists), behind rookie Brock Boeser, who has 55 points (29 goals, 26 assists). Henrik is third with 48 points (three goals, 45 assists) for Vancouver (30-40-9), which will miss the Stanley Cup Playoffs for a third consecutive season.

"I always thought they would keep playing," goalie Jacob Markstrom said. "It's what they always do, keep putting up points."

Daniel leads the Canucks in goals (391), power-play goals (137) and game-winning goals (85), and won the Art Ross Trophy with 104 points (41 goals, 63 assists) in 2010-11. Henrik is first in in assists (828), points (1,068), and plus/minus (167) and won the Hart and Art Ross trophies in 2009-10 after he had 112 points (29 goals, 83 assists). Daniel, who has 1,038 points, and Henrik are the only brothers in NHL history to each reach 1,000 points.

"Mixed emotions," said Canucks president Trevor Linden, who played his final six NHL seasons with the Sedins. "I am happy for them because I know this is a decision they have come to for the right reasons and they are 100 percent certain this is the right thing. But from the standpoint of a fan, I just loved watching them play. They played the game in such a unique way. The way they created time and space with their ability to find one another has been so much fun to watch for so long, and I'm going to miss watching that."

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