You find that you have peace of mind and can enjoy yourself, get more sleep, and rest when you know that it was a one hundred percent effort that you gave -- win or lose.
At the time of his retirement, Mr. Hockey's professional totals, including playoffs, for the NHL and WHA combined, were first. He finished with 2421 games played, 1,071 goals, 1,518 assists, and 2,589 points. Wayne Gretzky has since passed him in goals (1,072), assists (2,297), and points (3,369), but not games played (1,788). It is unlikely that anyone will surpass Howe's total professional games played. Mark Messier retired only 11 NHL games behind Howe at 1,756, but this is still a far cry from 2,421 total professional games.