After a decorated international career that included four gold medals and more than a point per game, Rick Nash announced his retirement Friday – just over 18 years after he first wore the Maple Leaf.
His final Team Canada résumé is highlighted by gold at the Six Nations Cup, IIHF World Championship and Olympic Winter Games, and 72 points – 37 of them goals – in 71 games.
Nash was a three-time Olympian (2006, 2010, 2014), standing atop the podium in Vancouver and Sochi and scoring his only two Olympic goals in playoff-round wins over Germany and Russia on home ice.
He made his debut in red and white at the 2001 World Under-17 Hockey Challenge, scoring six goals in as many games to help Ontario to a bronze medal.
After continuing his goal-a-game pace with five at the 2001 Six Nations Cup, winning his first international gold with Canada’s National Men’s Summer Under-18 Team, Nash made the jump to the World Juniors just a few months later, taking silver as the youngest member of Team Canada.
The Brampton, Ont., native was a mainstay at the IIHF World Championship from 2005 to 2011, appearing four times in seven years and almost always leaving his mark offensively.
His first appearance in 2005 was his most productive; Nash had nine goals and 15 points in nine games, finishing second in tournament scoring (behind Joe Thornton) and earning a spot on the all-star team to go alongside his silver medal.
Two years later he took the final step up the podium, posting 11 points – including a memorable game-clinching goal late in the gold medal game with a Finnish defender draped all over him – and taking all-star and MVP honours.
Another 13 points, another silver medal and another all-star nod followed in 2008, and he closed his worlds account as captain in 2011, the only time he did not reach double-digits in points.
Nash retires second all-time in goals (23) and points (44) by a Canadian at the IIHF World Championship, trailing Dany Heatley in both categories.
The first-overall pick in the 2002 NHL Entry Draft, Nash finishes his career with 805 points (437G 368A) in 1,060 games with Columbus, the New York Rangers and Boston. A six-time NHL all-star, he won the Rocket Richard Trophy after scoring a league-leading 41 goals in 2003-04.
Originally published at http://hockeycanada.ca/news/index?lang=en-ca&id=282027