Teemu Selanne

Still no decision for Teemu Selanne regarding his NHL future


We’ve seen a host of retirements this summer, mostly from Detroit thanks to guys like Brian Rafalski, Chris Osgood, and Kris Draper all opting to hang up their skates to live family life full-time. Oddly enough, we’ve seen 40+ year-old Nicklas Lidstrom opt to play for one more season and there’s another big name we’re waiting to hear from out of Anaheim.

Teemu Selanne had one of the best and most surprising seasons for a man of his advanced playing age. At 40 years-old, Selanne scored 31 goals and finished the year with 80 points, the most points he’s had in a season since 2006-2007 when he had 48 goals and 94 points in helping lead the Ducks to the Stanley Cup.

With 80 points at age 40 and a legacy that dates back to the 1990s that makes all of us old enough to have seen him in his 76-goal scoring hey-day feeling warm and fuzzy, it’s no wonder there’s a lot of interest in seeing come back and do it one more time. So will he or won’t he? Selanne’s agent tells the Orange County Register’s Eric Stephens that there’s no decision as of yet.

Agent Don Baizley has been tight-lipped about his star client and continues to offer little in the form of updates about Selanne’s progress. When asked by the Register how Selanne is doing after his arthroscopic procedure in late June or whether there’s any new timeline on announcing his plans, Baizley said in an e-mail that there’s “nothing new at my end.”

So while his own previous deadline of July 1 is now long gone, Selanne continues to keep Ducks fans and the hockey world waiting. But that’s nothing new for the Finnish Flash, who’s typically signed one-year contracts and has shown previously that he won’t rush into revealing his plans even when it’s evident that he wants to continue playing.

Oh so secretive, Teemu. He knows the fans in Anaheim want him to come back, he knows the Ducks staff and GM Bob Murray want him to come back, and he knows that the fans around the league love him. He’s also a guy whose career has been so good for so long that he’s earned the right to take his sweet time deciding if he wants to.

We’re unabashed Selanne fans here and the more we can see of him, the better. If Teemu decides that his once surgically repaired right knee can’t handle the rigors of a full season and playoffs again, he’s got no shame whatsoever in walking away from the NHL. With a career that’s seen him break the record for goals scored by a rookie (76) and winning the Calder Trophy in 1992-1993 and moving on to win the Stanley Cup in 2007 with Anaheim and sitting 14th all-time in goals scored with 637 he’s had a lot to be proud of in what’s sure to be a Hall of Fame career.

That said, seeing Selanne out there giving it one more go and being able to do so at a premiere level the way Nick Lidstrom does in Detroit as a 40+ year-old makes everyone hope they never stop playing. The end is near for both players in the NHL but we’re hoping for Selanne the end hasn’t already arrived.

Video: Ryan Suter doesn’t seem very happy with his coach


As you can see in the video, apparently Ryan Suter doesn’t like being paired with fellow lefty Jonas Brodin.

The Wild defenseman rather openly questioned the coaching staff’s decision-making today after practice.

“Yeah, I don’t know what they’re thinking,” said Suter. “I need to play with a right-handed defenseman. To give me more options. Neutral zone. Offensively. And even coming out of the D zone, it’s not fair to put a guy on his off side.”

Suter didn’t know if the pairings were just for practice or not. The Wild play tomorrow in Chicago. Minnesota has just one win in its last seven games.

Suter also had something to say about that.

“It does no good to pout and get pissed off at each other,” said Suter. “You’ve got to come together and dig out of this. Now’s when you need leadership more than ever. It’s easy to be a coach and a leader when things are going good.”

Yeo, by the way, has not been very happy with the Wild lately.  In fact, one could go so far as to say he’s been acting pretty “pissed off.”

For example, at today’s practice:

The Star Tribune has more on what went down today.

Yeo, you may recall, went a little “nuts” during a Wild practice last season.

Goalie nods: Sparks to make NHL debut for Leafs

Garett Sparks
1 Comment

We already knew this yesterday, but in case you missed it, Garret Sparks will make his NHL debut in goal for the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight against Edmonton.

Sparks, 22, has been excellent in the AHL this season, going 8-2-1 with a .938 save percentage. He spent most of last season in the ECHL, where he also posted good numbers.

Sparks is getting the nod tonight because James Reimer is hurt and Jonathan Bernier has been struggling badly.

“He’s got an opportunity like lots of kids have had before him and it’s up to him to grab it,” Leafs coach Mike Babcock said, per NHL.com. “He’s got the [second-best] save percentage in the AHL and he’s winning all the time down there. Obviously we’re in need of some saves and we’ll have to play well in front of him for sure. But it’s an opportunity for him.”

Bernier, meanwhile, will have to sit and watch. The 27-year-old has allowed at least four goals in four of his last five starts. His save percentage has fallen all the way to .888.

Anders Nilsson will be in net for the Oilers.


Cam Ward for the Hurricanes. Henrik Lundqvist for the Rangers, who will try not to rely on him so much.

Semyon Varlamov for the Avs. Thomas Greiss for the Isles.

— The Canucks aren’t saying if it’ll be Ryan Miller of Jacob Markstrom. For the Ducks, it’ll be John Gibson.

Vigneault: ‘After three losses in a row, I think we’ve got everybody’s attention’

Alain Vigneault
1 Comment

Alain Vigneault has maintained for much of the season that the New York Rangers needed to play better.

The head coach said it a week ago, after the Blueshirts had beaten the Predators, 3-0, despite getting outshot, 31-19.

He’d said it a couple of weeks before that, after they’d beaten the Hurricanes in very similar fashion. (Final score: 3-0. Shots: 33-23 for Carolina.)

But as long as the Rangers kept winning, it was tough, according to Vigneault, to get the message across.

“Sometimes, the results might be going your way, so when you’re pointing out certain things, it might be a little bit more challenging for them to understand because the results are so positive,” Vigneault said, per the New York Post.

“But after three losses in a row, I think we’ve got everybody’s attention.”

Derek Stepan‘s injury — he’ll miss 4-6 weeks with broken ribs — has no doubt captured their attention as well. (Oscar Lindberg will center Chris Kreider and Jesper Fast tonight at home to Carolina.)

The Rangers also play Wednesday, in Brooklyn against the Islanders (on NBCSN).

Benn, Holtby and Galchenyuk are NHL’s three stars of the week

Cory Schneider, Alex Galchenyuk ,
Leave a comment

Stars winger Jamie Benn, Capitals goalie Braden Holtby and Canadiens center Alex Galchenyuk have been named the NHL’s three stars for the past week.

From NHL.com:

Benn shared the League lead in goals (4) and points (6) as the Stars (19-5-0, 38 points) won two of three games to continue their best start to a season in the franchise’s 48-year history.

Holtby posted a 4-0-0 record with a 1.75 goals-against average, .945 save percentage and one shutout to backstop the Capitals (17-5-1, 35 points) to the top of the Metropolitan Division standings.

Galchenyuk tied for first in the NHL with four goals and added one assist to help the Canadiens (18-4-3, 39 points) earn five of a possible six points and reclaim first place in the League standings.

As much as the injuries to Carey Price and Brendan Gallagher have been frustrating for the Canadiens, those are short-term issues that should be forgotten soon enough. Galchenyuk’s play, in contrast, is reason for long-term optimism. The 21-year-old is trending towards becoming the elite No. 1 center the Habs have needed so badly. He’s not there yet, but when’s all said and done, he could turn out to be the best forward (or player, period) taken in the 2012 draft.