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A Familiar Face Helps Anaheim Cross Off Another Win

Ducks fans just got a wonderful surprise.

Paul Kariya

It’s happening.

No seriously. You’re not dreaming.

I thought I was seeing things hungover from celebrating yesterday’s Game 7 victory. No way this could be real.

But it is. And it is glorious.

For those of you who aren’t familiar, the Ducks have been utilizing their #PaintItOrange motto for the playoffs with a creative twist: having current and former members of the organization cross off a win countdown in the upper reaches of Honda Center.

Guests so far have included Bryan Allen, Jason Marshall, Guy Herbet, and the family of the late Ruslan Salei.

But today’s cross-off featured a guest that made Ducks fans jaws drop: Paul Kariya.

The notoriously reclusive Kariya joined Kai Quinonez, who was featured as an unoffical member of the Anaheim Ducks a few years ago as part of an event put on by the Make-A-Wish Foundation, to cross out number 9 on the countdown of wins to the Stanley Cup.

Does this signal an official return to the organization for Kariya? The former Ducks captain lives in Corona Del Mar and the organization has reportedly reached out to him several time to try and welcome him back in an official capacity.

Only time will tell if this is just the beginning of his involvement, or if it’s just a one off thing. For now, Ducks fans will continue to rejoice and reminisce, if only for a minute.

Check out the video below.