With the season winding down, and the WAY in which it is leaving us…there is no time to waste, straight to the therapy sessions! Plus, I need advice!
Saku Koivu just played in his 1,000 career NHL game. The feat isn’t necessarily impressive as countless of other players have reached that mark, but for Koivu it holds a special meaning all on it’s own! Had Koivu not been sidelined while battling cancer, he probably would have reached this milestone long ago. The simple fact that he was able to get to this point in his career is just as special and it means a lot to both he and the fans. I think a small bit of congratulations is in order, don't you? It’s wonderful to see such happy moments for any player who's overcome such odds.
Teemu Selanne – That’s Mr. 19 to you
This past week saw Teemu Selanne pass his boyhood idol Jari Kurri to become the 19th all time leading NHL scorer and highest ranking Finnish born player. No one would dare question his place in the Hall of Fame and I don’t even want to cover the topic of whether or not he’s going to come back for another year (yawn). So here’s the question…11 games remain for Anaheim, Selanne sits at 1,400 career points, next on the horizon is Dale Hawerchuk with 1,409. Does Selanne nestle himself into 18th? Can he surpass Doug Gilmore at 1,414 and go for 17th? Go Teemu!
Justin Schultz –
Get me a plane ticket, I’ll fly out there and get the kid to sign the damn contract myself.
Injuries and Inquiries –
With so many players sidelined with some nagging injuries, this has allowed us some more time with players like Kyle Palmieri (let the kid play against the Red Wings more often!). We’ve seen tons of Palmieri over the course of the past few seasons, and with some huge question marks for next year, it’s time to ask if he’s going to find a regular spot on the roster. Of course there are others to consider, Emerson Etem has proved to be a monster in the WHL this season scoring 60 goals, and while success in juniors doesn’t necessarily translate to success in the NHL, won’t it be worth it to give this kid a shot? What kid is making YOUR lineup next season (again, get me a plane ticket and I'll take care of this Schultz thing)?
I, like most other hockey fans, have at the top of my bucket list to "see a game in every NHL arena." At the beginning of this season the goal was to simply cross San Jose off of the list as it is an easily accessible destination. However, the Ducks only play the stupid Sharks on Monday’s in San Jose this season, so it was determined that we should find a great destination that would allow for weekend travel.
I began checking the schedule and noticed the final game of the regular season was to be played in Calgary. In fact, the final road trip of the season includes Vancouver and Edmonton as well. A week in western Canada watching the Ducks finish out the regular season? Sign me up! (Of course these grand plans were made well before October, November and December happened.)
Our schedule has us arriving in each city the day before the game and allowing for some sight seeing. That leaves me with one quandary…what to see in each city?! Mind you, we have about 1 day’s worth of "free time" before hitting the highlight of each destination and attending a game in the motherland of hockey. So, for those of you who have been or know someone who has been to any of these lovely cities, I would LOVE a suggestion for some "must see" spots that one can visit in a short day. Sights, food, experience - whatever you have to offer would be great! Also, my uncle is hoping someone might know where the Ducks stay while they're in these cities so that we might "bump into them" during dinner. [Ed. Note: I made this trip in the doomed 2009-10 season and it was the most fun I've ever had ever. I was booed by an entire arena while in Vancouver!]