RED DEER – On October 29 at the NHL’s Heritage Classic, St. Albert’s Meaghan Mikkelson announced her retirement from hockey.
“To the little seven-year-old Meaghan with a dream, I am so proud of you. Today, nearly 32 years later, I am officially retiring from professional hockey,” Mikkelson said in a statement posted to social media.
“This chapter of my life has been nothing short of a dream come true, filled with unforgettable moments, hard-fought victories, and valuable lessons that have shaped me into the person I am today.”
The 38-year-old began playing hockey at the age of six in St. Albert and her career flourished from there. She played on all-boys teams until she received a full ride scholarship to the University of Wisconsin, where she played four seasons and helped the Badgers win back-to-back NCAA national championships before making her debut for Canada’s National Women’s Team.
Mikkelson went onto help Canada win back-to-back gold medals at the Olympic Winter Games in 2010 and 2014 while adding a silver medal in 2018. She also won gold twice at the Women’s World Championship in 2012 and 2022 and took home silver in 2008, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2016 and 2017. She earned Top Defence honours and was named to the media all-star team at the 2011 tournament. Mikkelson wore the Maple Leaf on four different occasions at the 4 Nations Cup, winning two gold medals in 2009 and 2010 and two silvers in 2008 and 2017.
“Winning three Olympic and eight World Championship medals with Team Canada has been the ultimate honour, and I’m grateful for every opportunity I’ve had to represent our amazing country on the international stage,” Mikkelson continued in her statement. “It is a privilege I will cherish forever.”
Professionally, Mikkelson won a Clarkston Cup as CWHL champion in 2016 as a member of the Calgary Inferno and an SDHL title in 2018 with Lulea. She also played four seasons in the Western Women’s Hockey League, suiting up for the Calgary Oval X-Treme, with whom she won the 2003 Esso Women’s Nationals, and the Edmonton Chimos.
With all her professional and international success, Mikkelson said playing her minor hockey and growing up in Alberta had a major impact on her career.
“Some of my greatest memories come from going to Zone 5 camps and trying out for Zone 5 to play in the Alberta Winter Games to experiences in the Alberta Winter Games and from there to making Team Alberta to play at the Canada Winter Games,” Mikkelson said.
“I know that if I didn’t have those experiences, I wouldn’t have made it to where I am today. I was scouted for Team Canada when I played at the Canada Winter Games, so I value not only my experiences in minor hockey, but my experience with Hockey Alberta as well.”
Prior to announcing her retirement, Mikkelson joined the broadcasting industry in 2020, serving as an intermission analyst for the Edmonton Oilers. She was recently announced as Sportsnet 960’s new radio colour commentator for the Calgary Flames.
In addition to her broadcasting duties, Mikkelson is completing her Master of Business Administration degree at the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University.
“Thank you all for being a part of my incredible journey,” Mikkelson said. “Here’s to new beginnings and keeping life’s lessons close.”