I don't care who you are, how many games you've played, how many goals you've scored - when Teemu Selanne talks, you listen.
After Tuesday's devastating loss in overtime, an angry Selanne was seen chucking a waterbottle. Disgust and anger resonated with the future Hall of Famer. When the guy that is always happy is pissed off, you know serious changes have to happen. Not surprisingly, Selanne did not speak to the media following the game. Instead, he allowed himself to cool off as the team traveled to New York City. (Oh to be a fly in that plane!)
Following practice on Wednesday, Selanne spoke with the O.C. Register:
"You need everybody," Selanne said. "There's no room for passengers right now. Especially when the team is struggling. Everybody has to play their best and the effort has to be there every night. If not, it's bad news."
This is not just somebody talking - this is Teemu Selanne. A guy that could have hung up his skates in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 only to come back to the sport and team that he loves so much. Ducks players are constantly commenting on how taking the ice with him is an honor and a dream come true. It's time to repay Teemu for coming back all these years, and take the weight of an entire offense off of his shoulders. It's time for the rest of the Ducks to take the wheel and stop being passengers as Teemu drives.
This could be one of the more mentally important games of the season for the Ducks. A shocking loss like that in Washington would screw with anyone's head. The Ducks need to push themselves harder than ever to overcome the ghosts of Backstrom's past and whatever demons of self-doubt that resonates in their mind. A victory and the slate is once again clean.
Leave it all on the ice and you come away with a 'W'. That's all Teemu is asking for.