On Monday afternoon, the Anaheim Ducks were in seventh place in the Western conference. However, by the start of their game Monday evening against the Colorado Avalanche they had fallen to eighth due the Chicago Blackhawks win over the Detroit Red Wings.
Win of lose, the Ducks would remain in playoff contention at least through Tuesday night. However, considering their next opponent, the Calgary Flames, are currently sitting in ninth place, a win would definitely add a little bit of cushion for the Ducks who have been battling to remain in playoff contention for the past couple of weeks.
The Ducks, as of late, have become known for their last minute, seemingly miraculous wins, or as their announcers have fondly come to call them the “Cardiac Kids.” Many of these heart-stopping moments come from Ducks veteran, Teemu Selanne.
Selanne so often says, “At least we give our fans their money’s worth” and the phrase would ring true for Monday night, and Selanne himself made that happen.
Things did not start out well for the Ducks as Colorado took an early two-goal lead in just over the first five minutes of the game. In fact, the Ducks didn’t really start playing until the second period. The Ducks were awarded a penalty shot just 47 seconds into the period and Selanne was going to shoot it. He scored and just like that, the Ducks found their stride.
A few minutes after the penalty shot, the Ducks evened the game up at two with a goal from Jason Blake and about halfway through the period, Selanne added another, giving the Ducks their first lead of the game. However, David Jones tied it up for the Avs before the period was over, guaranteeing the result of the game would have to be decided in the last 20 minutes or overtime.
The Ducks added two power play goals in the third. The first one came about three minutes into the period from Ducks defensive rookie Cam Fowler, who with a goal and an assist in the game, established a new club record for both goals and assists by a rookie.
“The sky will be the limit for Cam Fowler,” Carlyle stated. “He’s only nineteen years old.”
The second power play goal in the period came with about five minutes left to play from none other than the Finnish Flash himself, Selanne. With that goal he not only completed his 22nd career hat trick, but he also managed to get a point in all five of the Ducks goals. With those five points, he now has 75 on the season, which puts him in third place for points in a single season by a player over forty and the season is not over yet.
“I’ve been feeling great all year,” Selanne said nonchalantly. “It has been fun and that is the only reason why I am still around.”
“He’s a special athlete doing special things at a really remarkable age,” Carlyle stated. “He doesn’t feel anywhere near the twilight of his career. He thinks he can continue to go out and score goals. He proves it night in and night out.”
Thanks in large part to Selanne, the Ducks got the win and reclaimed seventh place in the conference.
However, one question that frequently gets asked of Selanne remains unanswered and Ducks fans know it well… “One more year?”