By John Vogl
Miroslav Satan, who said this would be his final season, stayed true to his word and retired today following Slovakia's exit at the world championship. The 39-year-old leaves as a legend in his country and a regular on the Sabres' all-time scoring lists.
Satan, who played in Buffalo from 1997 to 2004, was a four-time Olympian. He served as Slovakia's captain at the world championship and departs as his country's all-time leader scorer in the tournament with 37 goals and 75 points.
He found the net regularly in Buffalo, too. He was the Sabres' top point-producer in four of his seasons, including a 40-goal outing in 1998-99 and a 75-point season in 2002-03.
Satan arrived in Buffalo in one of the team's most lopsided trades. Edmonton shipped him out in exchange for Craig Millar and Barrie Moore. Satan totaled 1,050 NHL games with the Oilers, Buffalo, the Islanders, Pittsburgh and Boston, putting up 363 goals and 735 points.
Known for his goal celebrations in Buffalo, Satan rolled on the ice to kill the monkey on his back and tweaked then-General Manager Darcy Regier by dialing him up on an imaginary cell phone near the trade deadline.
Satan didn't fit with Buffalo late in his career, with teammates like Chris Drury exasperated at the talented right winger's lapses in effort. Satan left the NHL in 2010 and spent the last two seasons playing for Bratislava of Russia's Kontinental Hockey League.