Buffalo veteran Jochen Hecht will retire from the NHL after 14 seasons, per the Buffalo Sabres Twitter account. Hecht announced his retirement to the media after the Sabres' 2-1 shootout victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday.
Hecht apparently made the decision a few weeks ago, in the middle of what has been a disappointing season for the Sabres. He'll return to his native Germany, saying "It's best for everybody to start a new life."
Hecht played for the Oilers and Blues in his first four NHL seasons before being traded to Buffalo in 2002. He's been a staple on the left wing in Buffalo ever since, scoring 186 goals and 463 points in 833 career games. He had a career high 56 points in 2006-2007. He was briefly named Buffalo's captain in 2007 and 2008.