By Kristy Shonka
The Augusta Chronicle
AUGUSTA, Ga. – It’s been five years since Jason Saal last lived near his daughter full time.
He’s not going to make it six.
Saturday’s season finale against the Gwinnett Gladiators will be the Augusta Lynx goalie’s last game as a professional hockey player.
“I can’t be selfish anymore,” he said. “I’ve got to do what’s best for my daughter.”
He plans to retire from the sport he’s played since he was a kid, move back to the Detroit area and become a police officer. He wants a front-row seat to watch 6-year-old Madison grow up.
“It’s time for him to come home and be with his daughter full time,” said Bob Saal, Jason’s father.
His son agrees.
Bob, who was a police officer for 15 years, said Jason has always talked about joining the department when his hockey career ended.
And after 10 years of playing a sport for a living, Jason said there was no way he could sit behind a desk for a 9 to 5 job. So, the police department was a natural career move. He’s looking for the camaraderie on the police force to fill the void he’ll feel when October rolls around and he’s not meeting a dozen or so new teammates.