Friday, July 13, 2012

Finnish Flash Will Return for 20th Season

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NHL fans received great news on Thursday when Teemu Selanne announced he would be returning for his 20th season. The hockey great signed a year deal with his current team, the Anaheim Ducks. The Finnish Flash is one of Sportmentary's favorite players of all time.

I remember Selanne's first season like it was yesterday. That's when he played for the original Winnipeg Jets and set the rookie season record for goals scored. Oh what  a season that was. Selanne became an instant favorite with Jets fans. He was a really exciting player.

The great thing about Selanne is that he followed his record breaking rookie season with 19 Hall of Fame worthy seasons and is now set to add a 20th. Selanne is 12th all time in goals scored and 19th all time in points. That's pretty impressive.

Not only is Selanne a great hockey player but Selanne is a class act. He's been a great role model for younger players and I hope they learn something from him. I hope his 20th season is a memorable one. I hope we see some flashes of brilliance and I hope that Selanne enjoys what is likely his last season.

It will be sad when he finally says goodbye. It will mark an end of an era. It will force me to turn to other, younger players to become my favorites. There aren't many players left from my youth. One comes of mind and that's Martin Brodeur who had a career year this past season. Marty's career is also near it's end.

Selanne has given us one more year to plan for his inevitable exit. We should take the time to enjoy every game. Before we know it, Selanne will be waving goodbye to his fans. Before we know it, we will be watching a press conference where Teemu is announcing his retirement.

What will we have left? Memories. We will have memories of cheering for one of hockey's greats. I will have memories of Selanne as Jet and as a rookie. That was a long time ago but it's a season that will always be etched in my mind.

I'm happy to have one more year and I will cherish it.

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