Former Ottawa Senators defenseman Matt Carkner told TSN 1200 on Monday that ‘to ramp up for another season….I don’t think I can.’
As a result, the blue liner – who appeared in 237 career NHL games during his time in the pros – is likely going to retire this summer.
A native of Winchester, Ontario, the 35-year-old heavyweight was selected in the second round of the 1999 NHL Entry Draft by the Montreal Canadiens. After spending his entire major junior career with the Peterborough Petes of the OHL, he would play for a number of seasons within the San Jose Sharks organization – predominantly for the AHL’s Cleveland Barons – before spending time with the Senators and Islanders organizations, as well.
Although he’s been around for nearly two decades at either the AHL or NHL level, Carkner – who will walk away from the game with 556 PIM in his 237 NHL contests – hasn’t played in the NHL for over two seasons now. He’s been with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in the minor league for a while now, so seeing him ultimately walking away – especially as someone who isn’t afraid to get physical in a game – isn’t terribly surprising.
In brighter news, though, Carkner did admit that he would be open to looking at a transition into coaching. Per Ian Mendes, the veteran is considering that as his option once he hangs up his skates at the pro level.