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CKA Uber
CKA Uber

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PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 1:13 pm

Teemu Selanne, a member of a National Hockey League team in Winnipeg again?

Probably not.

But don’t count out Eemil, Eetu or Leevi Selanne.

As Selanne’s Anaheim Ducks cleaned out their dressing room Tuesday, the Finnish Flash was asked about the possibility of finishing his career where it started, 19 years ago.

“That I haven’t thought about doing, having a chance to go somewhere else,” Selanne told reporters. “This is my place, for sure. I hope (Winnipeg) has a team. That city and the fans really deserve that. Maybe my sons. I’m too old to go somewhere else.”

And with that, the dreams of tens of thousands of Jets fans were dashed.

I wouldn’t fret, though. Simply having Selanne back in the NHL for another season, and perhaps making a cameo appearance, here, would be satisfying enough.

What the league’s nicest old man did this season defies logic. Between sips of prune juice, Selanne tossed aside his cane and managed to finish eighth in league scoring, with 31 goals and 80 points.

Only Gordie Howe (103) and Johnny Bucyk (83) managed more points at the age of 40.

Late in the regular season, the Ducks on his back, Selanne became the first 40-year-old to score three goals and five points in a game. Then he did everything he could to carry his team into the second round of the playoffs, scoring six goals in a six-game loss to Nashville.

And this man is considering retirement?

“I have to say don’t ask because I don’t know,” he said. “It’s the same question all the time, so it’s getting a little old. You have to wait and see how you feel. At this age, you have to be 100% sure you are ready to put yourself in this situation again. It takes so much more dedication now than when I was younger. This is no way you can do anything at 50 or 70%. To be honest, I don’t have to rush with it.”

Deciding whether or not to retire is one of the few things Selanne does slowly.

On and off the ice he’s a blur — one of his hobbies is driving Ferraris.

Giving up Ferrari and family time in the summer is getting harder every year, it seems.

“It was so much fun this year,” he said. “That’s all I really ask.”

There are no shortage of people trying to influence the guy’s decision.

His Ducks hadn’t been eliminated for five minutes when Nashville head coach Barry Trotz stopped him during the post-game handshake.

“You are an exceptional player, I love watching ya, don’t you dare retire — you’re way too good,” Trotz told Selanne. “He said he’s still having fun. And that was good to hear.”

Teammate George Parros: “He’s beating guys 15 years younger than he is to the puck every night. He’s still scoring. He’s still Teemu Selanne. How do you cut a career off like that?”

Ducks GM Bob Murray: “He’s too good to quit and I’ll do everything in my power to keep him here.”

Selanne has always said as long as he’s having fun and still contributing, he’ll keep playing.

But he’s been making leaving noises the last few seasons, going so far as to vow, in July, 2009, that the 2009-10 campaign would be his last.

A couple of freak injuries that season, and no playoff hockey for the Ducks, rekindled the fire, though.

“The fun and the passion brought me back,” he said, a few weeks back. “It’s funny how strong that is.”

Here he is again, on that ledge, peering down into that lush valley of retirement, asking himself if he really wants to go through it all again.

And in Winnipeg, we’re left to ponder something else.

When’s Leevi available in the draft?

http://www.winnipegsun.com/2011/04/26/t ... not-likely

:( Too bad, that would have been awesome!

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