Carrie Underwood and Husband Mike Fisher Decide on Life-Altering Change

Mike Fisher has officially announced his retirement from the NHL after 17 seasons playing for both the Ottawa Senators and the Nashville Predators, marking a major life change for himself and wife Carrie Underwood.

Fisher shared the news in a letter for The Tennessean on Thursday, writing that while the decision was a difficult one for him to make, he knew it was the right move.

"This is the hardest decision I've ever had to make, but I know I've made the right one," he wrote. "I've decided to retire from the NHL."

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Fisher's retirement comes after the Predators' historic postseason run this year in which they made it to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time ever, ultimately losing out to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"The way the city was behind us was unbelievable, and that's what makes the memory such a high -- but also bittersweet," he wrote of the team's run. "Can you imagine if we had a parade down Broadway?"

"Knowing we were so close to winning it all in June only makes it more difficult to leave it behind, but I do so with hope," he continued. "Endings are always tough, but I believe when something ends, there are new beginnings, new opportunities and new things to be excited for, too."

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ESPN shares that Fisher was selected by the Senators with the 44th overall pick in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, playing for the team for 11 seasons before heading to Nashville, where he was named captain for this past season.

"This job I've been able to have for a majority of my life is so much fun," the 37-year-old wrote. "To help create that entertainment and to see the joy we can bring to people is such a unique and exciting opportunity. I'll miss my teammates, my coaches and the game itself."

"I approached this season with the mindset that it could be my last, and now that it's past, I'm looking forward to a future that includes a lot more time with my family," concluded the athlete, who shares son Isaiah, 2, with Underwood. "Things change when you have kids and you have a family. They've supported me without question, and now it's my turn to return the favor."

Underwood used Instagram Thursday to share a movie tribute to Fisher and his career.

"Captain @mfisher1212 I sure am going to miss watching you play and cheering you on with the rest of Smashville, but I so look forward to seeing what God has in store for you in this next chapter of your life," she wrote. "You've given your teammates and the game your all for so many years...you've worked so hard and made us all so proud! Isaiah and I love you so much and are so excited to be able to have you home a lot more...We can't wait to cheer on the @predsnhl WITH you in the stands! #ThankYouSmashville #PredsFansForLife"

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Photo Credit: Instagram / @carrieunderwood / getty / Kevin Mazur