Journeyman netminder Michael Leighton announced his retirement Monday after 18 seasons of professional hockey.

"This is a really hard thing for me to say: I'm done playing because I've done this my whole life," Leighton told The Athletic's Scott Powers. "Since I was four or five years old, I've played hockey. It's been my life. For me to just say I'm done playing is a tough decision. It's just one that has to be made at this time."

Leighton, 38, dressed for 21 different teams throughout his career, spending most of his time in the AHL. Drafted in the sixth round of the 1999 NHL Draft, he played in a total of 126 NHL games (regular season and playoffs) and is best remembered for his role in the Philadelphia Flyers' run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2009-10.

Leighton entered his age-28 season with 69 career games under his belt but had never enjoyed much success. The Flyers claimed him off waivers from the Carolina Hurricanes after he began the year with a 4.28 goals-against average and an .848 save percentage.