Blackhawks' Jamal Mayers retires

Updated: December 13, 2013, 2:50 PM ET
By Scott Powers | ESPN.com

Jamal Mayers officially announced his retirement from the NHL after 15 seasons on Friday.

Mayers began his career with the St. Louis Blues in the 1996-97 season and also played for the Toronto Maple Leafs, Calgary Flames, San Jose Sharks and Chicago Blackhawks. He finished his career with 90 goals, 129 assists and 1,200 penalty minutes in 915 regular-season games.

"If you had asked me two years ago, 'Would I announce my retirement?', I would have said, 'No.' I came to terms with this a long time ago, and I saw myself as an average player," Mayers said in a phone interview on Friday. "The only reason this was necessary was to give thanks to everyone who got me there and helped me stay there. To my family and friends, it's just saying thanks. That's what it means to me."

Mayers finished his career playing with the Stanley Cup-winning Blackhawks last season. He had two assists and a plus-2 rating in 19 regular-season games and was considered one of the team's veteran leaders.

Mayers said winning the Stanley Cup last season made it easier for him to retire.

"One-thousand percent," Mayers said. "I would probably still be playing. I don't know how much of it is ego. I don't know how much of it is still fact, but I still think I can play. Winning allowed me to think not only about myself about this decision, and moving my kids to another city was not another option."

Mayers joined the NHL Network earlier this year and has been working as an analyst this season.

Scott Powers is a general reporter for ESPNChicago.com. He is an award-winning journalist and has been reporting on preps, colleges and pros for publications throughout the Midwest since 1997.

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