It’s a sign of the times in the game of hockey as tough guys are slowly re-routing their careers towards retirement. That seems to be the case once again as former Ottawa Senators defenceman Matt Carkner is considering hanging up his skates.
A former second-round pick (58th overall) of the Montreal Canadiens in 1999, Carkner played at the NHL level with the Senators, the Islanders and one game with the San Jose Sharks in 2005-06.
He spent a number of years in the AHL with the Sharks’ affiliate Cleveland Barons as well as the Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins, Binghamton Senators and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for the past two seasons.
Carkner had his best offensive NHL season with the Senators in 2009-10 when he suited up for 81 games for Ottawa and notched 11 points (2g-9a). Over parts of seven NHL seasons, Carkner scored 27 points (4g-23a) in 237 regular season games. He also added 556 penalty minutes of that time and commanded respect from opposing tough guys when he stepped on the ice.
The blue liner appeared on TSN 1200, where he said that it would be difficult for him “to ramp up for another season.”
It seems as though Carkner is interested in remaining in the game in a coaching capacity according to Ian Medes, but that will be decided once he call it a career – at least when it comes to playing the game.