Liam Fulton says he could never imagine himself seeking compensation from the NRL over concussion injuries because league has given him everything.
The 29-year-old Wests Tigers' star became emotional when revealing to teammates on Thursday that he had made the decision to retire due to the spate of head knocks he had received this season.
Fulton is still suffering short-term memory loss and confusion, symptoms which are of concern to him and his family.
The good news is he's been told the symptoms are reversible but they might not subside for a couple of years.
If he played the game again, Fulton said he could risk permanent damage.
With a young family to look after, he made the decision to call it quits a couple of weeks ago, but went on holiday to Fiji to mull things over before coming back to inform the club with which he played 161 matches and won a premiership in 2005.
Fulton thanked the NRL and the Tigers for the strict concussion guidelines they've introduced this year, and said he couldn't see himself following in the lead of NFL athletes who had taken legal action against their sport over brain injuries.
"Rugby league has given me everything, to be honest. It's up there with the best thing that's ever happened to me in my life," said Fulton.
"It's provided me with all my mates, financially -- it's been my life.
"I could never imagine myself doing anything like that.
"What the NRL have done this year with the concussions is a massive step forward for the game.
"In previous years, it was known as a badge of honour to stay on with concussion.
"It's a results-driven game but, this year, they've put player welfare first and it's fantastic."
Fulton suffered four concussions in just six games played this year and paid tribute to Tigers chief executive Grant Mayer for his support, including working for the club in an off-field capacity for the next two years.