Former Canadiens defenseman Andrei Markov retires from hockey

He last played in the NHL in the 2016-17 season, but 41-year-old defenseman Andrei Markov has retired from the sport of hockey, according to his agent.

“Hockey is over for him now,” agent Sergey Isakov told La Presse (translated via NHL.com). “He wants to spend time with his family.”

Markov was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the sixth round of the 1998 NHL draft. After 16 seasons with the Original Six franchise, he continued his career for the the past three years in the KHL and played for Yaroslavl Lokomotiv this past season.

Markov retired with 119 goals, 453 assists in 990 NHL games and participated in 89 Stanley Cup Playoff games. He also played in two NHL All-Star games.

“It was his dream to finish his career in Montreal,” Isakov said. “He really wanted to, but there’s nothing he can do about it. The general manager [Marc Bergevin] only wanted to offer a one-year contract (in 2017), while Andrei was looking for a two-year deal. After that, Andrei and I discussed the possibility of a return to Montreal, but it didn’t materialize. It’s too bad, because he really wanted to play 1,000 games for the Canadiens.”