Blackhawks' Patrick Sharp retires after 15 seasons

Patrick Sharp called it a career in Winnipeg, the city where his hockey journey began.

The Chicago Blackhawks forward and Winnipeg native played his last NHL game Saturday night. Sharp got a standing ovation in the third period after the announcer told the crowd the 36-year-old is retiring after 15 NHL seasons, 11 with Chicago that included winning three Stanley Cups.

"Being born in Winnipeg and then hearing the ovation from the crowd, seeing the other team tap their sticks and clap their hands, that hit hard and I'm just thankful for it, grateful for it," Sharp said.

On Friday, Sharp was honored in Chicago. He was given the A to wear on his sweater again and after the game did a lap in front of a cheering crowd.

"It's never easy, but I'm just ready to take that next step in my life, and I'm looking forward to it," Sharp said.

The Blackhawks honored Sharp with a highlight video in the third period, and he waved his stick and tapped his heart to acknowledge the sustained roar from what was left of the announced crowd of 22,218.

"It was a tough game out there, tough to concentrate with what was going on inside my head," Sharp said. "But thankful that I was able to do that. The Hawks put that video on for me in the third, which was really special. The guys staying on the ice and making me do a lap was something I'll always remember. So, special night."

Sharp finishes with 287 goals and 620 points. He cracked 30 goals four times and was an All-Star in 2011.

The Blackhawks acquired Sharp in December 2005 for a third-round draft pick, and he became a core member of the Stanley Cup-winning teams.

After the 2015 title, he was a victim of the salary cap and was shipped to Dallas, where he played for two seasons. He returned to Chicago, where he has maintained a home, on a one-year deal this past offseason with hopes of another Cup run. But the Blackhawks stumbled to last place in the Central Division.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.