Zdeno Chara is a Slovak professional ice hockey defenceman currently playing for the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League. He signed a one year contract with the Islanders on Saturday.

Born on March 18, 1977, Chara is the tallest player to feature in the NHL. Due to his height, coches in Slovakia wanted him to pursue basketball. He chose ice hockey instead. He has a special waiver to use a four inches longer stick than NHL regulations due to his height.

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Chara was drafted in the third round by the New York Islanders at the 1996 NHL Entry Draft. He was the 56th overall pick in the draft that year. 

Chara went on to spend four seasons with the Islanders organization, where he became a reliable, stay-at-home defender. He was traded to the Ottawa Senators in 2001. In 2001–02, during his first year in Ottawa, he recorded new career highs in goals (10) and points (23) as he turned into a bona fide two-way defenceman. His powerful slap shot continued to improve, and Ottawa began to deploy him on the power play to use it.

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 He signed for the Boston Bruins in 2006 and became the team’s captain. Chára was named to the 2007 NHL All-Star Game (his second appearance) in Dallas and scored two goals in a 12–9 Eastern Conference loss. In 2008–09, Chara was named to his fourth All-Star Game.

After a long career in a few teams, it was announced on September 18, 2021 that Chara would return to the Islanders on a one-year contract, after having last played for the team two decades prior.

Chara has represented Slovakia ten times, having played in the World Championships (1999, 2000, 2001, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2012), winning two silver medals and the Olympics (2006, 2010, 2014). He also competed in the 2004 World Cup of Hockey for Slovakia and the 2016 World Cup of Hockey for Team Europe.

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In 2020, Chara was named into the IIHF All-Time Slovakia Team