The Calgary Flames have been officially eliminated from the playoff race for almost a week now, but that doesn’t mean their season ended last Sunday.
The Flames had two games remaining on their schedule that were seemingly meaningless, other than them being played at home in front of a demanding crowd. On Thursday, the team was able to rally from behind to hand the Vancouver Canucks a blow to their bid to lock up the Presidents' Trophy. The Flames trailed after 40 minutes of play, but came back to give the Canucks their first loss of the year after leading through two periods.
Perhaps the win showed that Brent Sutter’s crew was not going to pack it in for the final two games of the season.
The Flames will now finish off their 2011-12 season for good when they host the Anaheim Ducks this afternoon. For two teams who have little to play for standings-wise, the game will surely be emotional.
Selanne started his career 20 years ago and he will be turning 42 years old in July. Very few hockey players are still able to play at that age, and he should be reaching the end of his career.
Despite having a career that is longer than many current NHL players' lifetimes, Selanne is still a highly effective player.
He leads the Anaheim Ducks in points with 66 and he has stayed healthy for all 81 of the team's games this year. Selanne may not be at the same level that saw him burst into the league with 76 goals in his rookie year with the Winnipeg Jets, but then again, no one in the league is on a level of 76 goals.
Selanne may be making his last appearance in an NHL uniform this afternoon, but there has been such speculation every season in the last four or five years. The “Finnish Flash” has proven that he still has the ability to play a big role on the Ducks, but his career has to end sometime.
The question is just when that will finally come.
Either way, just the fact that there is a chance it may be his last adds some excitement to a game that otherwise does not mean much for either team.
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