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Report: Kolzig not returning to Capitals

Report: Kolzig not returning to Capitals
The Washington Capitals goalie Olaf Kolzig (37) makes a glove save in the third period against the Florida Panthers on October 18, 2006 at Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. The Capitals defeated the Panthers 5-2. (UPI Photo/ Mark Goldman) | License Photo

WASHINGTON, May 9 (UPI) -- Goalie Olaf Kolzig is ending his 17-year association with the NHL's Washington Capitals.

The pending free agent and Washington's longest-tenured professional athlete told The Washington Post that he's known for some time his presence on the team was no longer needed.

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"It was disappointing the way it ended (but) as an athlete, you have to know when to move on," he said in an interview.

He told the Post he knew his career in Washington was over April 22 with the 4-3 loss to Philadelphia, which was Game 7 in the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.

On March 19, when Washington suffered a 5-0 loss at Chicago, it was Kolzig's 711th game with the Capitals. He did not start another game as the Washington coaching staff turned to Cristobal Huet for the rest of the regular season -- the Capitals won their final seven regular-season game and took the Southeast Division title, and the playoffs.

He told the Post he's in the process of selling his Maryland home and says he'd like to join an NHL title contender next season.

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