Tuesday morning, the Minnesota Wild announced that former Capital Matt Hendricks will be joining their front office as their new Assistant Director of Player Development, effectively ending his playing career.
Hendricks, who made the Capitals roster out of nowhere after receiving a PTO before training camp in 2010, carved out an 11-season career in the NHL, playing in 607 career games.
Hendricks discussed his retirement with the Jets’ Ryan Carter.
“Yeah, Ryan,” Hendricks said smiling. “Moving onto the next phase in my career. Looking forward to it.”
As part of his new role, the checking-line forward is a coach during the Wild’s Development Camp.
“These kids are pretty quick I have to get on my toes,” Hendricks said. “I think it’ll be a good transition. I haven’t been out of the game very long. I feel comfortable being on the ice still. I feel comfortable around the guys and being around the locker room and such. Any way I can help these guys, whether it’s on ice or off the ice, I’m looking forward to that challenge.”
In his final season in the NHL, Hendricks played in only 26 games — 22 with the Wild and 4 with the Winnipeg Jets after being dealt at the trade deadline.
“I think the writing’s on the wall when you start losing all your ice time and not in the lineup anymore,” Hendricks said of deciding to retire. “I think it was time for myself, my family, to let the playing career to come to the end. I still have a lot of passion for this sport. I’m excited to move on and be a part of it. I’m definitely going to miss being a player but I’m going to be around the game that I’ve grown to love.”
Hendricks became an instant fan favorite during his time in Washington for his grit, ruggedness, and skill. He was nicknamed “Wagon.”
“We’re more the role players, the guys who take pride in their niche on their team that doesn’t really revolve around scoring and putting up points,” Hendricks said to me once after practice during his time in DC. “But we love our job, we love to be the guys in the trenches, blocking shots, paying the price at those times of the games to win.”
Hendricks would later get another nickname, the “Paralyzer,” from his scintillating shootout moves.
After scoring a career-high 25 points during the 2010-11 season, Hendricks would go on to play for Nashville, Edmonton, Minnesota, and Winnipeg before hanging up his skates for good.
Way to go, Hendy. Cheers on a wonderful career!
— Eric Fehr (@EricFehr) June 25, 2019
More from the Wild:
ST. PAUL – Minnesota Wild General Manager Paul Fenton today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has named Matt Hendricks Assistant Director of Player Development.
In this new role, he will work directly with Brad Bombardir, Director of Player Development, and assist in evaluating prospects in the Wild organization and implementing programs to help continue their development, including the team’s annual summer development camp.
Hendricks, 38 (6/17/81), recently completed his 11th season in the NHL. He collected two assists in 22 games with the Wild before he was traded to the Winnipeg Jets on Feb. 25, 2019, in exchange for a seventh round selection in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. Hendricks tallied one assist in four contests with the Jets. The center recorded 116 points (54-62=116), 722 PIM and 1,398 hits in 607 career NHL games with the Colorado Avalanche (2008-10), Washington Capitals (2010-13), Nashville Predators (2013-14), Edmonton Oilers (2013-17), Winnipeg (2017-19) and the Wild (2018-19). Hendricks has also played in 39 career Stanley Cup Playoff games with Colorado (2009-10), Washington (2010-13) and Winnipeg (2017-18).
Hendricks collected 112 points (54-58=112) and 193 PIM in 152 games during four seasons at St. Cloud State University (2000-04), and served as captain his senior season. The native of Blaine, Minn., also recorded 155 career points (68-87=155) and 393 PIM in 247 American Hockey League (AHL) games in parts of six seasons (2003-09) before making his NHL debut with the Avalanche on March 10, 2009. Nashville selected Hendricks in the fifth round (131st overall) of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft.
He and his wife, Kim, reside with their twins, Lennon and Gunnar, in Deephaven, Minnesota.
Headline photo: Minnesota Wild
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
All original content on russianmachineneverbreaks.com is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)– unless otherwise stated or superseded by another license. You are free to share, copy, and remix this content so long as it is attributed, done for noncommercial purposes, and done so under a license similar to this one.