Defenseman Kimmo Timonen will return to the Philadelphia Flyers for another season, signing a one-year contract Friday. Financial terms were not released, though ESPN.com reports it has a base salary of $2 million with incentives that can push its value to $4 million.
The 39-year-old would have become an unrestricted free agent July 1 and was considering retirement.
"I talked to a lot of people around my age who retired and who kind of hung up their skates before they should have," Timonen said Friday. "I would say if I talked to 15 people, 13 of those people said don’t quit if you’re not hurt or something doesn’t force you to do it. Because you’re going to regret that forever. So that was kind of cool to talk to so many people that were saying the same thing: If there’s a team that wants you back and you can play, don’t retire."
Timonen had six goals and 35 points in 77 games in 2013-14 and has played in 519 of a possible 540 games for the Flyers during the past seven seasons. He has 38 goals and 270 points in that span.
"I still haven’t won the Stanley Cup, so that was obviously a huge thing," Timonen said. "I like the team. I like our chances and I like the way the team is going. I really think we have a good chance to achieve that, that I’m looking forward to."
The 5-foot-10, 194-pound veteran has won five Barry Ashbee trophies as Philadelphia's best defenseman. Timonen ranks third among Flyers defenders in points (270) and assists (232).
A 10th-round pick (No. 250) of the Los Angeles Kings in the 1993 NHL Draft, Timonen has 117 goals and 571 points in 1,092 games with the Kings, Nashville Predators and Flyers.
"When the season ended I wanted to see how I felt and I went away and really took time to think about, can I still do it, do I have enough in the tank to make sure I can still play at a high level?" Timonen said. "When I realized it after a few weeks of working hard, I realized I could still do it ..."