Joonas Donskoi announced his retirement from the NHL over the weekend. The 31-year-old from Raahe, Finland played seven seasons in the NHL.
In a social media post, Donskoi stated “It is extremely hard to let go of something you have put your whole life into, but at this point, I know it’s the right decision for my own well-being and future. I got to live my dream of being an NHL player, which I’m extremely blessed and grateful for.”
Joonas Donskoi was drafted in the 4th round of the 2010 draft by the Florida Panthers. However, Donskoi would see his first NHL action five years later as a member of the San Jose Sharks. In his rookie season, Donskoi played in 76 regular season games. Donskoi tallied 11 goals and 25 assists for a total of 36 points. The Sharks would go on to compete in the Stanley Cup playoffs that season, and Donskoi would play in all 24 of their playoff games. San Jose would win the Western Conference Finals over the St. Louis Blues that year, and compete against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Championship.
Donskoi’s best regular season would come in his fourth and final year with the San Jose Sharks. In 2018-19, Donskoi scored 14 goals and 23 assists in 80 games. Donskoi’s 37 points would help the Sharks to a 4th straight year of playoff appearances. After San Jose, Donskoi would sign as a free agent with the Colorado Avalanche. In two years with Colorado, Donskoi would help the Avalanche become a top-tier team in the Central and Western divisions on shortened seasons. In 2021, the Seattle Kraken would claim Joonas Donskoi in their expansion draft. Unfortunately for Donskoi, 2021-2022 would be Donskoi’s last full season in the NHL. During a preseason match last year, Donskoi suffered a seventh concussion that would keep him off the ice for the rest of the year.
In his retirement announcement, Joonas Donskoi said, “Thank you San Jose Sharks, Colorado Avalanche, and Seattle Kraken. It was an honor to be part of these 3 world-class organizations, cities and fanbases.”
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