Teemu Selanne started his career in Winnipeg in 1992 and was there for a mere four seasons (compared with 15 in Anaheim). Nonetheless, he is still as loved and respected by the Manitoban fans as he was when he played in a Jets uniform.
Although Selanne did not score in his final appearance in Winnipeg, he did get a well deserved standing ovation and the first star of the game. Why can't all franchises be that classy?
Selanne's Anaheim teammates were able to give him the 3-2 victory to end their three game road trip on a positive note.
"It was a very special night," said Selanne. "I knew it was going to be my last one here. It was emotional, but i tried to keep my emotions [under control]. Great memories here. It was good to leave with a victory and keep going."
Corey Perry, who had been snakebit in pre-season, finally got his first of the year on a gimme goal from Zach Bogosian. Bogosian fanned on a shot behind the Jets net, sending it straight to Perry, who happily buried it behind Ondrej Pavelec at 14:39 of the third period. It turned out to be the game winner.
"If I didn’t score that one, there’d be something going on,” said Perry. “It was a gift and those are the ones you have to capitalize on, especially right in front of the net with nobody around you.”
Andrew Ladd had both of the Winnipeg goals. The first came on the power play as a deflection in the first period and it took a while before Ladd was properly credited for the tally. The second was later in the period and it was clearly Ladd's goal.
“We didn’t deserve to win, regardless of (Perry's goal),” said Ladd. “Really the only reason we were in the game still was (Pavelec)."
Pavelec was outstanding, making 33 saves and giving his team a chance.
For the Ducks, Mathieu Perreault got his second of the year and Andrew Cogliano tied up the game in the second period. Viktor Fasth had less work to do at his end and made 15 saves.
The Ducks now come home and have three days to rest and practice before the home opener on Thursday against the New York Rangers. One of the things they need to work on is the penalty kill. After three games, the Ducks are 29th in the league out of the 30 teams with a dismal 54.6% penalty kill rate. Their power play isn't much better and both have vast room for improvement.
In other notes: Kyle Palmieri left the game with an upper body injury and did not return. Peter Holland was assigned to Norfolk of the AHL.