It’s only fitting that when the Anaheim Ducks finally retired Teemu Selanne’s jersey it would come on a night where the Southern California team would face the franchise that drafted the Finnish Flash: the Winnipeg Jets.
— Winnipeg Jets (@NHLJets) January 12, 2015
The team that introduced a budding legend to the National Hockey League took part in the festivities. While the Jets players weren’t dawning the number 8 that was raised to the rafters, the number 13 on the back of a Winnipeg Jets sweater also has its place in the history books.
— Anaheim Ducks (@AnaheimDucks) January 12, 2015
The Anaheim Ducks had their own ideas for how to tackle the pregame jersey and did so by wearing every iteration of a Ducks uniform Selanne dawned. The multiple types of jerseys bear the significance of Selanne’s time in Anaheim. For a young franchise in the entertainment saturated market of Southern California, the team needed an identity and that identity became Teemu Selanne. Selanne is also the first Duck to have his jersey retired by the franchise.
The video tribute featured Selanne’s iconic glove shooting celebration – any tribute without said celebration showing up would be blasphemous – and the jersey raising ceremony was as classy as they always are. Even the pretzels were shaped as number 8’s!
— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) January 12, 2015
The ceremony may have even been out classed by the following hockey game itself, as Anaheim led a furious third period comeback to do what they do so well and win in the shootout. For the Ducks, it was a fitting end to an overall great performance from the players all the way to the event organizers.
But for the rest of the hockey world, it was a time to reflect on Teemu Selanne’s career and what he brought to the NHL and hockey. An impact that won’t soon be forgotten.
Andrew Jow is an English student at Simon Fraser University where he covered the SFU Men’s Hockey team. Andrew is a Vancouver native and covers all things NHL for The Hockey Writers. Follow him on Twitter @MadJowDisease