Spend a few minutes with an Anaheim Ducks fan these days and while, yes, you are likely to still hear a bit about the Game 7 loss in the second round of the playoffs that sent the team and its loyal fans packing for the summer, you are also likely to have the statement immediately followed up with one surrounding the name Teemu Selanne. Spend a few more minutes with the fan and chances are the next name might be that of Jean-Sebastien Giguere. Although Giguere is currently a member of the Colorado Avalanche, he holds a special place in the hearts of those in Anaheim as the net-minder who helped will the beloved team to a 2007 Stanley Cup victory, the franchise’s first, but most likely not the last.
While the retirement of Selanne was set in stone from the beginning of the season, that of Giguere is now almost a done deal, without the public announcement. Reports Giguere has decided to call it a career have been swirling for weeks with the goalie supposedly only wanting to tie up a few ends before making it official. And despite current affiliation with another team, Giguere’s name is still as good as gold in Anaheim, a point proven as Selanne and Giguere took a stroll on the ice together after their respective teams played each other in the last game of the regular season.
Only a presence in Southern California since 1994, the Ducks have had many great players during the team’s 20 years in the NHL, Scott Niedermayer being one, but the franchise’s youth hasn’t allowed enough time for too many experiences like Selanne and Giguere going out together. Coincidentally enough, during this anniversary season, Niedermayer was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame; Selanne’s name will surely be there one day as well.
And as the crowd roared back on that April night as Giguere and Selanne took those (predictably) last skates together something became quite apparent to those orange faithful inside the Honda Center: while the game of hockey will certainly miss the jerseys with those names, many legacies will yet be made.