|Toby Petersen (Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)|
"I've known for months that it was the right decision," said Petersen after the Calder Cup rally Thursday night in Cedar Park. "There's never a good time to tell anyone when you're playing. I was watiting to stop playing. After the first surgery, I was leaning that way and then I broke my foot. A lot of factors went into the decision."
Petersen was hampered by injuries this season, including a sports hernia in the regular season and a broken foot sustained against Grand Rapids. On crutches, he raised the Cup on Thursday night.
"I'd love to have been out there skating it around. It's a great feeling to say I went out on top. I get emotional thinking about how hard these guys worked."
The Minnesota native spent the majority of his career in the Dallas organization. He actually began his time with Dallas as an Oilers prospect in 2005-06, playing in Iowa with players like Loui Eriksson and Nicklas Grossman. He was signed by Dallas in 2007 and has played with the organization ever since.
|(Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)|
"It's been a long time in the organization and you come across some quality people in this organization. I've been so lucky to play (here) for so long. I can't say enough good things. Seeing what Dallas did and what we did here, there are a lot of positive signs."
As to what's next, he's not quite sure. Typical options for players who retire and would like to stay in hockey are scouting or coaching. Petersen said he would like to go the coaching route if the opportunity is there.
"I'm going to take some time and think it over. I'm not ready to move on from hockey."
There is some precedent for a player to move from the ice to the bench on the same team after their last season. With the current situation of the Texas coaching staff in flux, there is some small possibility Petersen could be involved in the assistant coaching role for the AHL club.
"It hasn't been discussed at all," he noted. "With Willie, you never know what's going to happen, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it."
The consistently classy Petersen was a huge contributor to charitable efforts both in Dallas and with the Texas Stars Foundation in Cedar Park. He and his wife served as board members for the Foundation the past two seasons. He is likely to head back to Minnesota to be with his wife and three children before making his next move.