There’s really no such thing as a ho-hum win in Anaheim these days.
Monday could have been, given the matchup between two teams on opposite ends of the playoff picture. But an early 2-0 lead by the Avalanche, and the first three-goal, five-point game by an NHL player over the age of 40 changed that.
Teemu Selanne did not so much steal the show — he was the show, figuring into all five Ducks goals on a night when they needed every one.
“I’ve been feeling great all year,” he said. “I’ve been able to play with great players all the time. It has been fun. That’s the only reason I’m still around.”
The questions of whether or not Selanne will retire, but Monday’s game could only nudge him in the “should-I-stay” direction.
Here are some of the milestones Selanne achieved, courtesy of the Ducks’ PR staff:
Tonight marked Teemu Selanne’s 22nd career hat trick and 13th in a Ducks uniform (last: Oct. 29, 2008 vs. DET). It was the 33rd hat trick in Ducks history. He matched his career high for points in one game (ninth time, last: Feb. 24, 2008 vs. CHI, 3-2=5), which also ties the club record for points in a single contest (15th time, last Perry: Dec. 12, 2010 vs. MIN).
Selanne scored his second career penalty shot goal tonight. He is now 2-for-6 all-time, with his other PS goal taking place on his first career PS attempt: Mar. 9, 1993 with Winnipeg at Tampa Bay (Wendell Young). Prior to tonight, his last PS attempt took place on Mar. 18, 2007 vs. Los Angeles (Garon-no goal). He had been 0-for-3 on PS attempts with the Ducks.
With 634-701=1,335 points in 1,253 career games, Selanne reached the 700-assist plateau on Jason Blake’s goal at 4:06 of the second period. In addition, Selanne now holds a share of 29th in all-time points (with Mike Gartner) and holds sole possession of seventh in all-time PPG (235), surpassing Marcel Dionne with his third goal of the night. Next on the list is Mario Lemieux (236).
Selanne now ranks T-8th in the league in scoring (75 points), third in power play goals (15), and T-7th in points per game (1.12).
Selanne’s 75 points this season are the third-most in NHL history among players age 40+:
Player Team Year Points Age
Gordie Howe Detroit 1968-69 103 40 years, 276 days
Johnny Bucyk Boston 1975-76 83 40 years, 234 days
Teemu Selanne Anaheim 2010-11 75 40 years, 181 days
And a few more notes/observations:
The Ducks definitely matched their opponent’s intensity tonight, which worked against them for the first time in a while. They were being outshot 11-4 after 10 minutes and couldn’t get out of their own way at times.
Ray Emery was hung out to dry a few times by shoddy defensive-zone coverage, but Randy Carlyle observed that the goalie was playing deeper in his crease than usual. Emery was still good enough to win — and still perfect in a Ducks uniform: 5-0-0, 1.88 GAA, .938 save percentage.
Corey Perry picked up an assist when he was credited with the primary helped on Selanne’s third goal after the game. It was his only point of the night, but it’s not like Perry wasn’t trying — he put a game-high nine shots on goal.
Saku Koivu went 14-3 in the faceoff circle. Selanne, who is the first to sub in whenever Koivu gets kicked out of the draw, went 4-1. The Masterton Line had four goals and four assists, which is a lot easier when you start almost every shift with the puck.