Teemu SelanneWith the Anaheim Ducks 10 points back of 8th place in the Western Conference, it's really no surprise that ageless phenom Teemu Selanne's name is beginning to get tossed around as a trade target. He's on an expiring contact and he's got 50 points in 53 games. Sure, he's 41, but clearly, his age isn't bothering him. It shouldn't bother anyone else.
So is Bob Murray shopping Selanne? According to the Ducks' GM, no. In fact, it's not even up to him whether the Ducks' leading scorer is traded or not -- it's entirely Selanne's decision. From the Orange County Register:
General Manager Bob Murray has said that he has no interest in trading Selanne. It would have to be up to the winger to ask for a deal if the Ducks are out of playoff contention by the deadline but he wouldn't address that possibility after taking the morning skate ahead of Friday night's game against the Wings.
"I have tried to avoid that question," Selanne said. "We still have [hope]. Everybody in this room believes that we can make the playoffs and I think that would be almost wrong to even think about any other options. That's not in my mind right now. Let's see what happens.
It's tough to fault Selanne for such a noncommittal answer. The truth is, while the Ducks are indeed 10 points out of a playoff spot, they're also 7-1-2 in their last 10 games. And with the rest of the Western Conference's bubble teams struggling to establish a claim on that eighth seed, Anaheim stealing the spot is still a possibility.
Whether it's a distinct or a remote possibility remains to be seen, at least until after their upcoming, 7-game road trip, which ends three days before the trade deadline. A good showing on that trip and there's still a chance that Selanne enters the postseason with Anaheim.
This is a shame, of course, if you're a fan of ageless, Hall of Fame-bound, robo-Euros like the Detroit Red Wings are. Unsurprisingly, they're one of the teams rumoured to be interested in Selanne's services, and with the Ducks opening their trip in Detroit Friday, Selanne was asked about whether he'd be willing to join fellow Finn Valterri Filppula in the Motor City. From the Detroit Free Press:
"We have good chemistry, let's put it that way," Selanne said, smiling. "But I try to avoid that question, because the only main focus is on here."
In short: we'll see. There's a lot riding on Anaheim's road trip, and one imagines the Red Wings will be hoping to make sure it starts poorly for more reasons than one.