The inspiration for one of the greatest video game athletes of all time is expected to announce his retirement tomorrow. Jeremy Roenick was one of the greatest Americans to ever play in the NHL; he’ll leave the game with 1,216 points, placing him third among U.S.-born players and 39th on the all-time list.
After breaking into the NHL during the 1988-89 season, Roenick was one of the original players incarnated in the Electronic Arts’ NHL video game series, starting with NHL Hockey in 1991. Roenick left his mark in other ways as well, whether it was voicing his opinions over the NHL lockout in 2004-2005 or appearing in an episode of TNT’s Leverage. He’s done TV analysis, too, and I think one time he killed a bear while having sex with your mom in 1997.
The San Jose Sharks didn’t seem too jazzed about keeping Roenick around; he turns 40 in January and second-year head coach Todd McLellan appears ready to part ways. Watching his team post the best regular-season record last year and then crapping out in the first round might have something to do with that. But Roenick was one of those guys that helped make the NHL a little more personable to fans with a great deal of charisma, much like Alex Ovechkin does today. and he leaves some mighty big skates to fill. Yeah, it’s the end of an era.