On Saturday night, Selanne did what only he can do when he found the five-hole of Los Angeles Kings netminder Jonathan Quick to score a go-ahead goal in the third period; in even more typical Selanne fashion, he scored it one-handed. Chuck Norris better watch out.
After a controversial benching midway thru Anaheim’s first playoff series against the Dallas Stars that nearly incited riots in Anaheim, Selanne is proving why he is still such a vital key to the Ducks’ finely-tuned system even when he isn’t finding the net night in and night out.
While the speed of Selanne is certainly no longer what it once was, his intelligence in making split-second decisions that pay off seems to have only improved with time. During Anaheim’s last game against Dallas, one in which the Ducks were at a consistent two-goal deficit through most of the night, Selanne’s ability to see a play form before the opposing defenders paid off with two big assists to get Anaheim back in the game.
On Saturday night, the Finnish Flash stole the show once more. In fact, at times Selanne seemed 20 years younger, skating into the zone with the speed that earned him his nickname.
It would be ridiculous for Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau to pull Selanne from a game again, perhaps for the safety of downtown Anaheim as much as for the success of this team. It wasn’t coincidence that the Ducks lost the game in which Selanne was pulled — no, not a coincidence at all.