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Martin Havlat retires from NHL

Forward played 790 games for six teams during 14 seasons @NHLdotcom

Forward Martin Havlat announced his retirement from the NHL on Wednesday.

Nicknamed "Mach 9" in recognition of his skating skills and jersey number, Havlat had 594 points (242 goals, 352 assists) in 790 games during 14 seasons in the NHL with the Ottawa Senators, Chicago Blackhawks, Minnesota Wild, San Jose Sharks, New Jersey Devils and St. Louis Blues. He scored 21 goals and 52 points, including three overtime goals, in 75 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

"That was fast," Havlat, 35, said in a statement released by the NHL Players' Association. "I feel like I was just getting started in the NHL a short while ago. I would love to continue playing but my body will not allow me to play at the level I expect from myself. As a result, I am announcing my retirement."

Havlat was selected by Ottawa with the No. 26 pick in the 1999 NHL Draft and was a finalist for the Calder Trophy after scoring 19 goals and 42 points in 2000-01. He helped the Senators win the Presidents' Trophy with 24 goals and 59 points in 2002-03 and reach the Eastern Conference Final with 11 points (five goals, six assists) in the playoffs. Havlat scored an NHL career-high 31 goals the following season averaging a point-per-game in his 68 appearances.

Video: STL@NJD: Gomez sets up Havlat to score on Devils

"I feel very fortunate to have played in the NHL for 14 years," Havlat said. "Rest assured, I am retiring as a grateful man. I will be forever thankful to the Ottawa Senators for helping make my childhood dream come true. I also had the privilege of playing for other exceptional organizations. I am grateful for the time spent with each team and the great teammates I had the pleasure to be around on and off the ice."

Havlat also represented the Czech Republic twice in the Olympics (2002, 2010), led it in scoring (three goals, three assists) at the World Cup of Hockey 2004 and won a gold medal at the 2000 IIHF World Junior Championship.

"I know when you retire people ask you about your favorite moment or memory, but for me, it's tough to pick one," Havlat said. "There are so many things I'm grateful for. It was a great run. Sure I had my ups and downs, but I loved the game and enjoyed too many positive things to pick one."

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