Chances are you've seen just about everything from that incredible Sunday night at Honda Center in which Teemu Selanne played his final regular season game. If you haven't (or you just want to re-live it), here's the video
But there was one story from last night that you probably didn't see.
After the game was over, and all of the magic from that postgame ovation had finally died down, a pretty big group of fans waited for Teemu at the top of the ramp at the north end of Honda Center. You'll frequently see a handful of fans there after games, because that's where players drive out of the arena on their way home. But well after the game had ended, they had yet to see Teemu.
That's because he was still in the building, having a late dinner at the Jack Daniel's Old No. 7 Club with his business manager, Pasi Jaatinen, and about a half dozen friends who flew in from Finland to surprise him. In fact, it's a lot of the same guys who he brought in to watch him play in the Stanley Cup Final in 2007
, and last night he didn't know they were there until they showed up behind the glass during warmups.
|Here's Teemu signing for the fans at around 1:30 a.m. |
I had heard part of this story this morning, and Teemu enthusiastically filled me in on the rest after practice today, frequently tapping me with the back of his hand in kind of a "Can you believe this?
When he finally headed out of Honda Center at around 1:30 a.m., those fans were still up there waiting for him. According to Teemu, the modest group of mostly adults all of a sudden got much larger when he arrived, growing to close to 100 people. That's because those fans' kids were sleeping in their cars and were woken up to join the group once Teemu pulled up.
Nevertheless, he stayed and signed for every last one of them. When I told him I couldn't believe that, he just laughed and said, "How could I not?!"