D Yannick Weber retiring from NHL after 13 seasons

Defenseman Yannick Weber announced his retirement Tuesday from the NHL after 13 seasons.

The 32-year-old will continue playing in his native Switzerland, where he signed a three-year contract with ZSC Lions of the National League on June 8.

Weber, who reached the 2017 Stanley Cup Final with the Nashville Predators, made his announcement in a letter to the Stanley Cup posted on Instagram.

“Dear Lord Stanley Cup,” he wrote. “Fifteen years ago, I left Switzerland with a dream: to be drafted by an NHL team. With only a handful of Swiss players ever playing in the best league in the world, for me it seemed more of a hope than a possibility to be next in line.”

The Predators lost the championship series to the Pittsburgh Penguins in six games.

“2017, I was two wins away from meeting and hoisting you, but Sidney Crosby decided to keep you for another year and I was left heartbroken and devastated.” Weber wrote. “You made me understand why it’s the hardest trophy to win and how fortunate you have to be to have your name engraved.

“Even though I can’t call myself a champion, you left me with a lifetime of memories and great friendships. Now it’s time to head back home and enjoy time with my family.”

Weber played in two games with Pittsburgh in 2020-21. He leaves the NHL with 94 points (28 goals, 66 assists) and 195 penalty minutes in 499 games with the Montreal Canadiens (2008-13), Vancouver Canucks (2013-16), Predators (2016-20) and Penguins.