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Savard announces retirement from NHL

Aims to pursue coaching career after playing 807 games with four teams

by Nicholas J. Cotsonika @cotsonika / NHL.com Columnist

Marc Savard hopes to get into coaching after announcing his retirement Monday.

Savard, 40, had 706 points (207 goals, 499 assists) in 807 NHL games as a center with the New York Rangers, Calgary Flames, Atlanta Thrashers and Boston Bruins. He played his final game with the Bruins on Jan. 22, 2011, because of concussion-related symptoms, and his last contract expired after the 2016-17 season.

"This is not an easy thing for me to put down into words, but I feel as though I'm ready now for the next chapter in my life to begin," Savard wrote in a message on his Twitter account. "Also, last but not least, my health is the best it's been in a very long time, and I'm grateful for that."

"I think the biggest thing is that I'm happy where I am in my life," Savard told NHLPA.com. "I'm the healthiest I've been in a long time. I didn't want it to linger on any more. My contract is up and I wanted to get it out there and head off in a different direction to pursue a coaching career."

The Rangers selected Savard in the fourth round (No. 91) of the 1995 NHL Draft. He debuted with the Rangers on Oct. 3, 1997, playing with his idol, Wayne Gretzky. His best season came with the Thrashers in 2005-06, when he set NHL career highs for goals (28) and points (97). From that season through 2008-09, he ranked 11th in the NHL in points per game (1.12). His name is on the Stanley Cup with the 2010-11 Bruins.

"It has been a wild and wonderful journey, and one I'll remember forever," Savard wrote. "It is impossible for me to give credit to all people who have contributed in so many ways to my career, but to those who believed in me, and helped me believe in myself, I'd like to thank you from the bottom of my heart.

"I believe I can make a positive impact in this world. I love hockey, and I will forever have a passion for this game. I look forward to the chances I may have to give back to the game that has given me so much. I've learned a thing or two from some great people throughout my career and life, and I look forward to a chance to pass that along to others."

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