The veteran midfielder, who suffered a torn ACL in May, is stepping away from the game after 11 years in MLS.
The Columbus Crew announced the midfielder's retirement Thursday, five months after his season ended with a torn ACL. Gaven, who was coming off a career-best nine goals in 2012, entered MLS as a 16-year-old with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars before spending eight seasons in Columbus.
"I realize this may come as a surprise, but it is something I have been contemplating for some time, and after discussing it thoroughly with my family, I know in my heart that now is the right time to start the next chapter in my life," Gaven said in a press release.
A member of the Crew's 2008 MLS Cup championship side, Gaven appeared in 278 regular-season games, compiling 57 goals and 31 assists. The 2004 MLS Best XI selection also made eight appearances for the U.S. national team.