Tonawanda News


December 1, 2011

Sabres' Finley defies odds to reach NHL




Mike Grier, the popular former winger who enjoyed two successful stints with the Sabres, retired Thursday after 1,060 games over 14 NHL seasons. The 36-year-old hadn’t played this year.

“Just good memories,” Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said about Grier. “Mike was one of the ultimate competitors, a big man that played the game hard, was great in the locker room, was well respected by his teammates, and I think that if there’s anybody you’d like to be like as a young guy walking in the locker room, you’d want to follow in Mike’s footsteps.”

Grier, who entered the league with Edmonton in 1996, compiled 162 goals and 383 points. He quickly became known as a strong checker forward and penalty killer. He played 241 games with the Sabres, first from 2004-06, and then from 2009-11 after a three-year stint in San Jose.

“I was very fortunate to be able to play 14 seasons in the NHL with some great players,” Grier said in a statement. “The memories and friendships that I have built during my time in the league will last a lifetime. I would like to thank my former teammates, family and fans for helping make my career so memorable for me. It was a great ride, and I am now excited and looking forward to my post-playing future.”

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