See the update and funny video on Page 2 that Teemu Selänne uses to announce he'll be back with the Anaheim Ducks for what will be the future Hall of Famer's final season.
ORIGINAL POST, AUG. 15, 2:12 P.M.: The Anaheim Ducks have let Teemu Selänne know they want him back next season.
Now comes word out of Finland (in Finnish!) that the 43-year-old forward may not be … wait for it … finnished!
He reportedly met with Ducks general manager Bob Murray Tuesday to discuss a contract extension.
This comes from Timo Kunnari of MTV 3 Finland, who adds Selänne was seen working out on the ice yesterday at the team's practice facility.
Honest, you Finns can read it here to see I'm not making it up.
When I interviewed Selänne early in the season in February, he said he could not even bring himself to consider retirement.
But then he saw his ice time decrease two minutes per game by the end of the season. One thing he reportedly wants to know from Murray is how head coach Bruce Boudreau plans to utilize Selänne during the 2013-14 season, so he knows whether it is worth it to even undergo grueling training again.
“All things considered, it's not a surprising dynamic to Selänne's potential return,” writes Matt Brigidi on sbnation.com. “He is a player who has played a lot of important minutes over the course of his career. … [H]e likely wants assurance that he will be able to play with top-six caliber line mates and spend a considerable amount of time on the power play.”
Brigidi also brings up rumors about Selänne potentially signing with a new team.
Over at SI.com, Allan Muir opines that Selänne has lost a step (a skate?), “but there's still enough left in those legs to make a contribution to the Ducks . . . if he's used properly. The trick now is determining whether he and the team see eye-to-eye on what that proper usage is.”
Going into the summer, the Ducks made it clear they would hold a roster spot open for Selänne until he's ready to reveal his future in the game. Anaheim reportedly has $4.3 million in cap space. Selänne earned a pro-rated $4.5 million in 2013.
By the way, he ended his vacation in Finland to come back to Anaheim to chat with Murray. He's also got a date next Thursday, Aug. 22, at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach, where the Orange County Youth Sports Foundation is honoring Selänne as the 2013 Sportsman of the Year.
He'll be the first NHL player to receive the award, as past recipients have included Jerry West, Tommy Lasorda and Dick Enberg. Selänne is also scheduled to join the foundation for a golf and cocktail event at Pelican Hill resort on Wednesday. (For information about the events, visit http://www.ocysf.org.)
That's a swell, well-deserved honor. But Selänne may also one day become the first player to go into a major American sport's hall of fame as a member of an Orange County professional team.
UPDATE, AUG. 30, 2:29 P.M.: Through a funny YouTube video, Teemu Selänne breaks the news Ducks fans have been hoping to hear since last season ended …
Wonder if the Anaheim crew will think about possibly promoting his final NHL season?
All I know is, when it comes to been there/done that, speaking in an unknown tongue after hitting a bad drive, using a golf club to find my ball down the side of a hill and throwing my bag into the drink out of frustration: check, check and glug, glug, glug …
Although I can now confirm reports that I'm much better out of the sand than at least one future NHL Hall of Famer.