After 15 years in the NHL, longtime Nashville Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne announced his retirement. Rinne leaves Preds’ franchise with an incredible legacy. The Finnish netminder has many significant contributions both he and many of his fans can look back on.
Rinne Hangs Up The Skates After 15 Years
Rinne, who will turn 39 in November, has a lot to be proud of. He played a whopping total of 683 NHL career games with the Preds and is dubbed as the franchise leader in just about every aspect of goaltending.
He has recorded 369 wins and has a goals-against average of 2.43. In addition, Rinne has a total of 60 shutouts and 17,627 saves. In a nutshell, Rinne will be leaving the ice with a record of 369-213-75.
But that’s not all of Rinne’s important contributions, though. Rinne won the 2018 Vezina Trophy, given to the NHL’s top goaltender and was named as finalist for that same award on three occasions. Those were back in 2011, 2012 and 2015. In addition, Rinne was voted twice to the NHL’s All-Star Team.
Rinne didn’t stop there. He’s just one out of the 12 goaltenders in NHL history to get at least 350 wins and 60 shutouts. To make things better, eight of those 12 goalies are now in the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Additional Accomplishments Made By Rinne
Drafted 258th overall in the 2004 NHL Draft, Rinne has created such a big influence around the community and made many impressive records – ones to look back on and be very proud of.
Rinne made his debut on Dec. 15, 2005 in a 5-3 win against the Chicago Blackhawks. He moved up to starting goaltender for the Preds during the 2008-09 season.
During his second years as starter, Rinne registered his first of eight career 30-win campaigns. This is a pretty rare accomplishment made by a goaltender, though. He is just one out of eight other goaltenders to have made this accomplishment.
The 2014-15 NHL season went well for Rinne. This began the very first year of what would end up being five straight years that Rinne would win 178 out of 305 starts. Thanks to his performance over the season, he was able to help his team go into the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
The 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons were pretty important years for the veteran goaltender. Each season brought the Preds some amazing times. In 2017, the Preds made it to their first-ever Stanley Cup Final and Rinne won the Vezina Trophy in 2018. In addition to that, Rinne helped the Preds earn the Presidents’ Trophy.
The 2018-19 season for the Preds was yet another highlight for Rinne. This was the season that he recorded his eighth and final 30-win season. At the conclusion of that season, Rinne helped the team win their second straight Central Division title and started in all of their postseason games in mid-2019.
But, as expected, Rinne didn’t end his list of accomplishments there. Actually, he extended it some more, beginning in early 2020. Jan. 9, 2020 was such a special day for Rinne, recording his first ever NHL goal. This meant that Rinne would end up being the 12th goaltender in the history of the NHL to do so.
Additionally, Rinne’s big goal occurred in a 5-2 defeat over the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center.
Rinne’s Contributions Off the Ice
Now, let’s shift gears and talk about what Rinne has done off the ice. To begin with, Rinne earned the King Clancy Trophy this year, thanks to dedicating his whole career to the communities of Nashville and the Middle Tennessee areas.
Rinne also made important contributions to the communities through the Predators Foundation, empowered by SmileDirectClub.
Rinne’s career also includes launching the 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund with former teammate Shea Weber. The duo launched this during the 2012-13 season. The goal of this fund is to work with the Monroe Carrell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt to help raise money and bring awareness for cancer research. Since the creation of this fund, more than $3 million in donations have been made.
In conclusion, Rinne has made so many contributions for both the Preds and the local community. But, just because he’s retiring, that doesn’t mean he won’t stop contributing. He leaves behind an amazing legacy – one that will not be ignored.