A Healthy Scratch for 2 Straight Months, Former Cup Champ Considers Future

After being recently healthy scratched for two months, and closing in on his 39th birthday, it's fair to wonder if Minnesota Wild defenceman Alex Goligoski has played his last NHL game. 

And that's exactly what Goligoski was asked by Michael Russo and Joe Smith of The Athletic. Surprisingly, the former Stanley Cup champion (2008-09, Pittsburgh Penguins) says he hasn't actually thought about retirement.

I think you stay in it while you’re in it. You start asking questions later. We’ll see how everything goes here, get to the offseason, see how you feel and go from there. I honestly haven’t really thought about it too much.

But one thing Goligoski has thought about, is a future in an NHL front office. 

“I actually think about it a lot,” he said. “It’s definitely something I’m interested in. It’d be something in management. I’ve spent a lot of time in locker rooms. Coaches are here more than we are.”

In fact, a poll of his Wild teammates pegged him as most likely to be a GM someday. He'd like to think he's made some inroads on the way to that part of the game by coaching his 7-year-old son's games. 

So how will he know when it is time to officially hang up the skates? 

“I think you’ll know,” he told Russo and Smith. “Most guys say that you kind of know when it’s time. Time to move on.”

This season, Goligoski has nine assists in 32 games while playing a career-low 15:18 per game. In 17 NHL seasons, he's recorded 474 points in 1074 games with a +54 rating, in 22 minutes of ice time per night. And that one Stanley Cup from his rookie season, which he shared, coincidentally, with his current teammate Marc-Andre Fleury. 

Everything seems to have come full circle for Goligoski. 

Photo: © Matt Blewett-USA TODAY Sports