Flames’ Michael Stone announces retirement, joins Calgary’s player development staff

Canadian hockey player Michael Stone has retired and joined the Calgary Flames as a staff member.

Calgary says Stone has joined as the newest member of their player development team.

Stone, 33, had played for the Flames from 2016 to the end of the 2022-23 season. The Winnipeg native ends his career with 145 points (44, 104) in 552 NHL games for the Phoenix then Arizona Coyotes and Flames.

He joins director of player development Ray Edwards as well as Martin Gelinas, Darren Rommerdahl, Rebecca Johnston, Danielle Fujita and Rick Davis as a member of the player development team.

Stone says he was wavering about returning as a player for the 2023-24 season but reached out to the player development team about a role as a coach for defencemen.

He says the role is a good first step in his coaching career and seeing if it’s something he wants to continue.

Jets sign Samberg to 2-year deal

The Winnipeg Jets have signed defenceman Dylan Samberg to a two-year, $2.8-million contract.

The 24-year-old from Hermantown, Minn., had two goals and six assists in 63 regular-season games with the Jets last season.

He also appeared in five playoff games.

Samberg was selected by the Jets in the second round, 43rd overall, at the 2017 NHL draft.

He represented the United States at the 2023 world hockey championship in Finland and Latvia, where he had a goal and three assists in 10 games.

Hornqvist retires after 15 seasons

Patric Hornqvist, who won the Stanley Cup twice with the Pittsburgh Penguins and a world championship gold medal with Sweden, also announced his retirement on Wednesday.

The 36-year-old forward, who suffered multiple concussions during the 2022-23 season where he was limited to 22 games, told Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet that his injury history was a key reason behind his decision.

“Hockey has been a huge part of my life since I was a kid, so of course it’s a difficult decision to make, but I have my injury history and don’t want to risk anything in the future. Therefore I have finished playing,” Hornqvist told Aftonbladet.

The native of Sollentuna, Sweden had 543 points in 901 NHL games during a career spent with the Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins and Florida Panthers. His 264 NHL goals are tied for 10th most by a Sweden-born player.

In 2017, Hornqvist scored the Stanley Cup-clinching goal for Pittsburgh late in the final period of Game 6 against his former Predators team. Hornqvist also won a Stanley Cup with Pittsburgh in 2016.

WATCH | Hornqvist scores Cup-winning goal against Predators:

Game Wrap: Penguins are Stanley Cup champs again

6 years ago

Duration 2:38

Patric Hornqvist scored with 1:35 left in regulation as the Penguins defeated the Nashville Predators 2-0 in Game 6 on Sunday night.

Hornqvist, who was taken by Nashville with the final pick of the 2005 NHL Draft, 230th overall, last played in early December when he sustained his second concussion in the span of a month while a member of the Panthers.

The concussions prevented Hornqvist from being a part of the Panthers’ run to the 2023 Stanley Cup Final where they lost to the Vegas Golden Knights.

On the international stage, Hornqvist represented Sweden on numerous occasions, including at the 2018 world championships where he scored two goals in five games and celebrated a gold medal win over Switzerland in the final.

While Hornqvist acknowledged he will miss being around the locker room with his teammates, he is feeling better and excited for whatever comes next.

“It will be a big adjustment, but it feels good now, I’m looking forward to the rest of my life,” said Hornqvist.

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