Ducks erupt as Selanne scores his 600th goal
Teemu Selanne, the 39-year-old right winger from Finland, scored his 600th career goal in what is most likely to be his final NHL season as the Anaheim Ducks beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-2 on Sunday. "I was a little nervous that if it didn't happen tonight, it might not happen here at all," Selanne said on reaching his milestone.
"It's great, but it's way more special happening at home. So I'm very happy about that. It was a big relief for me, for sure." Selanne is the fourth player to reach the milestone in the past four seasons, along with Jaromir Jagr, Brendan Shanahan and Joe Sakic. "There are only 17 other guys that have done it before, and it's a special group," Selanne said. "You need a lot of luck, hard work and great players to play with. I have had all those things."
Playing in his 16th NHL season, Selanne scored on his fifth shot of the game while John-Michael Liles was off the ice for hooking Matt Beleskey. "He's a great guy, and we definitely were pulling for him," said Selanne's teammate Scott Niedermayer. "There was an underlying feeling when you're on the ice with him. You want to at least give him the opportunity. He knows how to score goals." Elsewhere, the San Jose Sharks lost their sixth game in a row with a 5-1 defeat to the struggling Edmonton Oilers.
The Sharks are in the midst of their longest losing streak since 2005 but are still only a point behind Chicago, the Western Conference leaders. "Right now we just don't have enough [good] players every night," said Todd McLellan, the San Jose coach. "We get two or three back to where they're supposed to be and then another two or three drop off. And you can't have that." Devan Dubnyk made 27 saves to earn the win, but, the Oilers' rookie goaltender's shutout bid was spoiled by Ryane Clowe.
Edmonton, who have the fewest points in the NHL, took control with first-period goals from Robert Nilsson and Dustin Penner. Fernando Pisani made it 3-0 in the second before Shawn Horcoff and Aaron Johnson scored in the third. The Oilers (23-42-7) have won two in a row while San Jose (43-19-10) have lost the first five games of a six-game road trip. "We stayed in our spots, blocked a lot of shots and cleared pretty much every rebound. It was a complete 60 minutes," said Dubnyk. "Everyone is just settling in and feeling comfortable. It's unfortunate it's this late, but it's important for us to start to create an identity."
* With agencies
Published: March 22, 2010 04:00 AM