Swans favourite son and premiership hero, Nick Malceski, announced his retirement from AFL yesterday. In a cruel twist of irony, he retired from the game from ongoing knee problems, having already recovered from three knee reconstructions.
One of the few players to have successful LARS grafts, Malceski was inspiration for Alex Johnson when he suffered his first ACL injury.
The 32 year old still had a year to run on his contract, but was unable to continue. The 210 gamer will not be lost to the Suns, as he will take up a coaching role with the Academy next season.
“To be honest, I couldn’t go on,” Malceski said.
“When reflecting on my year and the direction of the footy club it became clear to me that the time was right to call it a day.
“I will be forever grateful to the Sydney and Gold Coast Football Clubs and I wish to thank both clubs, their players, fans, my family, friends and everyone who has shown me unwavering support throughout my playing career.”
Drafted by the Swans in 2002 with pick 64, Malceski went on to become a mainstay in the team after his 2005 debut season. He acquitted himself well in the 2006 losing grand final, but would ultimately go on to become a premiership hero in 2012.
Kicking the first and last goals for the Swans, he clinched victory with a snap over his shoulder with 34 seconds left, handing the Swans their 2nd premiership in 7 seasons. He would finish with the Swans in 2014 after their losing grand final to Hawthorn, moving to the Gold Coast Suns on a 3 year deal.