Ryan Smyth - Through the years

Ryan Smyth, affectionately known as "Captain Canada" for his loyalty to the national team, announced his retirement from the NHL on Friday. Here's a look back at the Alberta native's 19-season career, the vast majority of which was spent with the Edmonton Oilers.

The Oilers chose Smyth with the sixth pick in the 1994 NHL draft. He made his debut with the Oilers in January 1995 and, after a brief stint in the minors, was in Edmonton for good by the fall of 1996.
Ryan Smyth rookie
The Oilers chose Smyth with the sixth pick in the 1994 NHL draft. He made his debut with the Oilers in January 1995 and, after a brief stint in the minors, was in Edmonton for good by the fall of 1996.
Smyth was a member of the Oilers when they and the Montreal Canadiens played in the 2003 Heritage Classic at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton - the NHL's first regular season outdoor game.
Ryan Smyth Heritage Classic
Smyth was a member of the Oilers when they and the Montreal Canadiens played in the 2003 Heritage Classic at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton - the NHL's first regular season outdoor game.
Smyth and goalie Roberto Luongo celebrate with their teammates after Canada's 3-2 overtime win over Sweden in the final of the 2003 World Hockey Championship. It was Canada's first gold - and first medal - since 1997.
Ryan Smyth 2003 worlds
Smyth and goalie Roberto Luongo celebrate with their teammates after Canada's 3-2 overtime win over Sweden in the final of the 2003 World Hockey Championship. It was Canada's first gold - and first medal - since 1997.
Smyth was a double world champion in 2004, following up in the summer as a member of Canada's team in the World Cup of Hockey. He notched three goals and an assist in six games and Canada captured the title by beating Finland in the final.
Ryan Smyth World Cup
Smyth was a double world champion in 2004, following up in the summer as a member of Canada's team in the World Cup of Hockey. He notched three goals and an assist in six games and Canada captured the title by beating Finland in the final.
It's strange that Captain Canada was never Edmonton's permanent captain, although he did wear the C on occasion. Doug Weight, Jason Smith, Shawn Horcoff and Andrew Ference have been the Oilers' captains during Smyth's stints with the team.
Ryan Smyth captain
It's strange that Captain Canada was never Edmonton's permanent captain, although he did wear the C on occasion. Doug Weight, Jason Smith, Shawn Horcoff and Andrew Ference have been the Oilers' captains during Smyth's stints with the team.
Smyth returned to the Olympics in Turin in 2006 but it was a disappointment as Team Canada finished out of the medals after a quarter-final elimination at the hands of Russia. It was Smyth's second and last Olympic experience.
Ryan Smyth 2006 Olympics
Smyth returned to the Olympics in Turin in 2006 but it was a disappointment as Team Canada finished out of the medals after a quarter-final elimination at the hands of Russia. It was Smyth's second and last Olympic experience.
Smyth helpd lead the Oilers to a surprise appearance in the 2006 Stanley Cup final, following wins over Detroit, San Jose and Anaheim in the Western Conference playoffs. Edmonton's Cinderella run fell just short as the Carolina Hurricanes won the Cup in seven games.
Ryan Smyth 2006 Cup final
Smyth helpd lead the Oilers to a surprise appearance in the 2006 Stanley Cup final, following wins over Detroit, San Jose and Anaheim in the Western Conference playoffs. Edmonton's Cinderella run fell just short as the Carolina Hurricanes won the Cup in seven games.
It was impossible for Smyth to hide his emotions after the Oilers traded him to the New York Islanders in February 2007. He held a tearful press conference at the Edmonton airport before boarding a flight bound for Long Island.
Ryan Smyth traded
It was impossible for Smyth to hide his emotions after the Oilers traded him to the New York Islanders in February 2007. He held a tearful press conference at the Edmonton airport before boarding a flight bound for Long Island.
Almost two years to the day after Smyth signed with Colorado, the last-place Avs went into rebuilding mode and traded him to the Los Angeles Kings in July 2009 for Kyle Quincey, Tom Pressing and a draft pick.
Ryan Smyth Los Angeles Kings
Almost two years to the day after Smyth signed with Colorado, the last-place Avs went into rebuilding mode and traded him to the Los Angeles Kings in July 2009 for Kyle Quincey, Tom Pressing and a draft pick.
He left Edmonton in tears four years earlier, but Smyth was all smiles upon his return in 2011. Los Angeles granted his wish and traded him back to the Oilers in exchange for Colin Fraser and a draft pick.
Ryan Smyth back with Oilers
He left Edmonton in tears four years earlier, but Smyth was all smiles upon his return in 2011. Los Angeles granted his wish and traded him back to the Oilers in exchange for Colin Fraser and a draft pick.
Smyth was named the game's first star on March 6, 2014, against the Islanders. He had scored his 126th power play goal as an Oiler, tying Glenn Anderson's franchise record.
Ryan Smyth power play goals
Smyth was named the game's first star on March 6, 2014, against the Islanders. He had scored his 126th power play goal as an Oiler, tying Glenn Anderson's franchise record.
Edmonton Oilers Ryan Smyth announces his retirement from NHL hockey in Edmonton, Alberta, on Friday, April 11, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jason Franson)
Edmonton Oilers Ryan Smyth announces his retirement from NHL hockey in Edmonton, Alberta, on Friday, April 11, 2014
Edmonton Oilers Ryan Smyth announces his retirement from NHL hockey in Edmonton, Alberta, on Friday, April 11, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jason Franson)

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