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Teemu Memories

by Staff Writer / Anaheim Ducks

Teemu Memories

As part of Teemu Tribute Night this Sunday, fans were asked on Twitter and Facebook to tell us their favorite memories of Teemu from the past several years, including any stories, photos or anything else that expresses what Teemu has meant to them. Following are the fan submissions:


Logan Altman
Teemu has been a huge part of my life since I was a little boy watching him skate his first games as a Mighty Duck. I will never forget when I was at Famous Footwear and my mom said "Logan look! It's Teemu Selanne!" and I was too afraid to go up and get his autograph. Since then, I have witnessed live Teemu raise the Stanley Cup over his head back in June of 2007 and have had the pleasure of chatting with him over the years after games and practices, all while bringing up that Famous Footwear story. He was a huge reason why I began playing hockey and following the Mighty Ducks (now Anaheim Ducks). I will forever wear my signed Selanne jersey, keeping his legacy living on! Kiitos, Teemu!


Amanda Bosse
In March of 2014, my boyfriend and I travelled from our hometown of Sudbury, ON Canada to go see a Ducks game in Anaheim. The Ducks are my boyfriend's favorite sports team since he was a child, and Teemu Selanne was his favorite player. The day of the game arrived and Andrew couldn't be more excited!! When the Ducks hit the ice for warm ups, #8 was nowhere to be found. Little did we know, Selanne was out sick with the flu that night. Andrew had bought these tickets about 5-6 months before the actual trip so you can imagine his disappointment, on top of the Ducks losing to a shootout against the Montreal Canadiens.

The following night, we were making dinner plans when we decided to hit up Selanne's restaurant in Laguna Beach in hopes of running into him there. As we were walking up to the entrance of the restaurant, there he was!! Just standing there talking with some friends. Andrew ran back to the car to grab the jersey I had gotten him for Christmas that year for Selanne to sign.

Anyone who knows my boyfriend knows that he doesn't show excitement all that often, but the look on his face that night was priceless!! We posed for a few pictures until we got the one that Andrew, myself and Selanne liked the best.

That moment truly made a once in a lifetime trip, truly amazing!!

Shelby Stamberger
My dad had been Teemu's biggest fan since his career began with the Ducks. My family has owned our season tickets since the beginning of the franchise, and we had never met Teemu, our favorite player. For my dad's 50th birthday, my mom and I set up a surprise for my dad to meet his player "idol" on the last game of the season, Fan Appreciation Night. After the game was over, our ticket manager came to tell us that she wanted to discuss possibly upgrading our seats, so we followed her down to the lower levels of Honda Center. Little did my dad know that where she was taking us, we would be ready right when Teemu came out from the locker room.

When we got there, there were lines of reporters and other fans ahead of us, all anticipating the same thing as we were. However, when Teemu walked into the hallway, he came directly to us first and was so kind as to talk with us, take photos and sign all of our jerseys and a special puck for my mom at home. The strange thing was that there was a camera crew there to interview my dad about Teemu, so we still aren't quite sure where that video ended up. All in all, Teemu was so classy (as always) and it was a magical moment for all of us to meet the legendary Finnish Flash.


DeAnne Shepler
My family met Teemu at a youth hockey tournament. He was eating chili watching my kids’ game. Once my kids knew he was there they ran up to meet him. He signed autographs for all of them and even wrote a note for the one that was on the ice. He will forever be one of my favorite Mighty Ducks, so generous and gracious with the fans. 


Deanna Williams
I have so many, but here are two that are very special to me. Back in 2012 when I thought he was going to retire, I made a special photo book for him. I waited outside Honda Center before a practice, as he walked up I handed him the book. To this day, I would love to know if he liked it. He said thank you with that great smile. It contained all of the pictures I took of him at many events from 2005 until 2012. I know people are always wanting something from him, and I wanted to give him something special from my heart. It included some great pictures of him and Saku and and some of his other teammates. I thought it would be something special he could have once he retires.

My second was, in 2013 I was visiting my family in Ohio. We got to go and see the Ducks play in Columbus. My two young cousins worked all day on posters asking for a puck from Teemu. During warmups, he saw the two boys and me in my Ducks jersey and flipped a puck over to both boys. They were so excited. I brought the pucks back with me to Anaheim. The day after Christmas, I got Teemu to sign both pucks. He stated he remembered that game and flipping the pucks to my cousins’ kids. Super guy, super memories. I sure miss him doing that at Honda Center and I am sure alot of young fans miss him doing that as well. 


Brett Landrum
It was a few years back during the post-Thanksgiving game against Chicago, and I was in the Jack Daniels club during the first intermission. The Ducks had just unveiled the new third jersey (now home jersey), which of course I had immediately purchased upon my arrival to the Pond. I was wearing my new jersey proudly, and had put my old Teemu jersey, which I arrived in, into the gift bag for safe keeping.

Suddenly, a woman rushed past me to a table nearby, exclaiming "I got Teemu's autograph!" At the time, Teemu was sitting out the game with an injury.

I immediately pulled her aside, asking "where is he?!" She pointed to the nearest box, where I saw him standing with his two little boys by his side. I hurriedly asked to borrow her pen, pulled my now-retired Teemu jersey out of the bag and casually but smoothly bee-lined it for the box. Not smooth enough—I was stopped short by an usher who was clearly positioned there for this very purpose. Undeterred, I held my jersey up in the air and yelled "Teemu!" He turned, spotted me, and immediately motioned for me to enter his box. I side-stepped the usher, beaming. Teemu shook my hand, thanked me for my support, and placed his iconic signature over the #8 on the back of my jersey.

He was polite, gracious, and welcoming. The authenticity of his appreciation for his fans was clear to see. I was too star-struck to remember to ask for a photo—but it didn't matter. He made my day, and my season.

I now have the jersey custom framed on my wall, surrounded by the 2007 Stanley Cup patch and four of Teemu’s trading cards. Thank you Teemu! Go Ducks!!!


Jake Rudolph
My memories of Teemu run so far back. Not so much on meeting him personally but in the sense of falling in love with hockey. I can remember going to games when I was younger than 10 and seeing Selanne and Kariya. It was so much fun to watch and is a very special time in my childhood. Then transitioning to his return to the Ducks, this is what brought me back to Hockey.

I had not really paid attention after the cup run in 03, then hearing Teemu was back made me watch again. Now I am a diehard fan of the team, and I don't know if I would have even come back to hockey if it was not for Teemu. It is difficult to explain how much of an impact someone you have never met has had such a distinct impact on your life, but this is the case for Teemu on me. For that I would like to say thank you so much. Thank you for all the one more years. Thank you for the Stanley Cup. Thank you for all the memories. And most of all thank you for being Teemu.  


Dany Mineau-Pleau
I live in Longueuil (near Montreal) and I'm a Ducks fan since ‘93. Teemu is some kind of an inspiration to me. His determination always mean a lot to me and served to me as a example to achieve some steps in my life.

Last year, the last time he came with the Ducks in Montreal (vs Canadiens), I wanted to meet him as well as to show him his face I've tattooed on me so he can sign it (crazy right? ahah). I've worked hard to have this chance because it's not so easy to meet a celebrity without any contact. Luckily, I was at the good place at the good moment and I've meet someone who's now a good friend/contact to me who wanted to help me in my quest to ''meet the Finnish Flash''. FINALLY, I had the unique chance to finally meet him. Honestly, that was crazy and funny. I didn't know what to expect at first but after a moment, I was like wow, this is a gentlemen. Pretty kind of him, he took a picture with me, signed my jersey and my tattoo.

One of the best moments in my life. I hope I'll be able to meet him again! Thank you, Z.M. You know who you are !

Kim
It was 1996 and Teemu had just been traded to the Ducks. We were at Fan Faire at Disneyland. They would put a different player in each "land" and you would get a schedule of who was going to be there at certain times. I really wanted to get Paul Kariya's autograph, so my friend and I headed over to what was going to eventually be his line. Everyone pretty much had the same idea and the line seemed snaked around the park. They cut the line off at some point but those of us in line already ran out of time to reach Paul. The event only lasted until a certain time and pretty much all of the players had left to go home, Kariya included.

One player stayed and signed for everyone that had been waiting in line for hours. That player was Teemu Selanne. He was new to the organization at the time but still cared enough about the fans to go above and beyond what was asked of him. It happened almost 20 years ago now, but I still remember it to this day. I knew very little about him as a player that day but learned so much about him as a person. Thank you for being you Teemu.  


As most people might know, ice hockey is not the most popular sport here. ... I'm a huge Ducks fan and all that just because of Teemu. He truly changed my life and he'll be in my heart forever. Anna, 15-year-old from Germany
Anna
I'm a 15-year-old girl from Germany. And as most people might know, ice hockey is not the most popular sport here. And before 2014 I didn't know anything about hockey. But then, one day, when I watched TV, and there were the Olympic winter games in Sochi, I watched my first ever hockey game: USA vs. Finland.

After the first couple of minutes I fell in love with the game. It was so fast and exciting to watch. And then my eye caught that one guy on the Finnish team. I don't know why, but I just liked him. His name was Teemu Selänne. I Googled him and found out that he played in the NHL for the Anaheim Ducks. I didn't know what the NHL was so I did a lot of research. Since then everything was about hockey. I learned the rules, watched videos and basically tried to find out as much as possible about hockey. I know it's only been a year since then but now I know a whole lot about hockey. And even though there is a big time difference, I watch almost every game live (most of the time at 2.30 a.m!!) or I watch them after I come back from school. I'm a huge Ducks fan and all that just because of Teemu. He truly changed my life and he'll be in my heart forever.    


Sharon Kantarovich
I have been a Ducks fan since 1993. When Teemu joined the team, there was a new kind of excitement he brought with him. It seemed as if the team finally "clicked". My dad, who passed away in 1999, was a huge hockey fan, and his favorite player was Jari Kurri. After seeing Teemu play, my dad said, "Do you see that young Finnish guy over there? He's going to be the next Kurri... or greater ." My dad was always right!

When he left to San Jose and then Colorado, I was pretty upset, even more so when his career was in question with his knee injury. I was completely thrilled when he finally came back "home" to Anaheim.

When I first met my boyfriend, he asked me who my favorite Ducks player was. Who else? A few days later I was the new owner of a Winnipeg Jets Teemu signed jersey. Coincidently we have been together almost "8" years! I had attended many Ducks events (being a seat holder for 20 years!), and he was always the gracious one to sign autographs and pose for pictures with the fans. One of the best surprises was when we walked into the Club entrance one night only to find Teemu "working" at the concierge desk! Another time, we sat in the penalty box for warm ups and watch him get into his "Flash mode" up close.

The past few days have brought back so many Teemu memories! We were so fortunate to see the Selanne screening last night and learned so much more about him. Just when you thought you couldn't love this guy any more! What an amazing career! Thank you Teemu, and congratulations on an amazing career. You will be missed, and we hope to see you and your beautiful family around the OC!


Tarynne Webb
Two years ago, my husband became very ill and ended up needing emergency surgery where he almost lost his life. Three surgeries later, with the help of Violent Gentlemen and Sheldon Souray, we were back at the game and were able to meet Selanne on the benches after they played. We were blown away by the friendliness and warmth we felt from someone we had never met before! He made us feel like family. He made sure that every last bit of memorabilia was signed, and even held our friends baby for a little while.

We are so lucky to have watched such an amazing and dedicated player on the ice for all of these years, and we wish him nothing but a lifetime of happiness from here on out. Thank you for being such a big light our lives, Selanne! You will never be forgotten.


Joel Hill
Sometimes, Honda center allows local adult league hockey teams to play a game on their ice after a game. My brother had one such opportunity. After the game Teemu approached him and told him he had been watching the game and that he had talent and he should consider going pro. It's pretty awesome that Teemu would take the time after playing his own game, to sit and watch a beer league game. 


Chris Duncan
To impress the girl I was dating, I took her to a Ducks game and we were fortunate enough to meet Teemu after the game at a restaurant. As we had our picture taken, I inexplicitly threw up bunny ears behind Teemu. He was a great sport about it. That girl is now my wife, and of course Teemu is her (our) favorite player. Thanks Teemu!


Stephanie Vosler
My senior year of high school in 2007. I was a HS golfer who was taking private lessons to further my chances of being an impact player, just like Teemu, at the college I was about to attend that coming fall. I had shown up early to my lesson at Tijeras Creek Golf Club and began hitting practice shots to warm and tune up. I recognized this voice but couldn't place it. I ran through all my acquaintances and still couldn't place it. Finally I took a big stretch and at the exact same time I saw Teemu getting a new club from his bag. I instantly turned into the little girl who was meeting her idol for the first time (I was much much younger when he began playing hockey).

After his lesson my coach introduced me to him and I spoke with him for a few moments. During that time not only did I embarrass myself and make him feel old but I also received words of encouragement and praise for my swing. Embarrassingly I was so star struck that I did not ask him to sign anything for me.  


Gerald Feldman
1st was at the Fedorin Cup charity event. Teemu made himself available to all his fans for pictures and signatures. 2nd was at the Fan Fest last year. After every other player left, Teemu stayed over 2 extra hours to make sure EVERYONE in line got his signature and/or picture. He is one of the most FAN friendly players in the NHL


Thomas

There are two things that come to mind. The first was when the Ducks won the Cup. I remember looking down at the Ducks bench and seeing Teemu jump up and down like a kid at Christmas. The second came at the Fedorin Cup a few years ago. I got him to sign my hat, and when I told that it was the hat I wore the night the Ducks won the Cup, he just looked so happy and had the biggest grin on his face

Michele Lee
Teemu memories. So many! I would have to put them all together and state that no matter how many times I meet him, no matter how many times I've asked for an autograph or photo, he greets me as if he's known me forever, always with a smile, and never annoyed at yet another request! He has made hockey part of my life on a daily basis, has given me and my family something we'll share forever and exemplifies a world class athlete, in every way! And of course...who could forget that Game 5 goal?!! Teemu, thanks for everything!!!!


Janet Perdikis
It was Teemus's 1st day with the Mighty Ducks, and I had taken my kids to a practice game at the rink that day to get some of the players autographs and hope to see Teemu. We watched the whole practice and got a few autographs but no Teemu. As we were getting ready to leave and the practice was over, we see this car pull into to parking lot and who do you think it is but Teemu!!! He was wonderful with all the kids and got out of the car to sign autographs and take pictures with all them that were there :). He won my heart that day!! Love you Teemu <3


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