(The Sports Exchange) – Martin Skoula, a former first-round pick of the Colorado Avalanche, announced his retirement on Tuesday.

Skoula, who played in nearly 800 career NHL games, was drafted 17th overall in 2009 by Colorado. He was a member of the 2001 Avalanche team that won the Stanley Cup.

The 36-year-old spent the past five years playing in Europe. He last played in the NHL with New Jersey during the 2009-2010 season.

Skoula was a strong defender who also possessed solid offensive skills. During the 2001-2002 campaign he registered 10 goals and 31 points.

In addition to Denver and New Jersey, his NHL career included stops in Anaheim, Dallas, Minnesota and Pittsburgh.