Ducks Cap the Perfect Season
The Anaheim Ducks threw a party the likes of which Southern California has never seen on Saturday night; well if you are a hockey fan that is! On a perfect Southern California night, a crowd that was by some estimates 20000 plus showed up at the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA to cheer the first ever Stanley Cup Champions from California!
As always seems to be the case at a big event, the Ducks arrived fashionably late for their "curtain call." In dramatic fashion, the Stanley Cup arrived just before sunset; Helicoptered in courtesy of the Anaheim Police Department-- and the fans went wild! Among the speakers was California's Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger who spoke briefly to the crowd invoking some of his more memorable movie lines, "Then, when it came to the last game, it was, 'Hasta la vista, baby!'" he said. Among the fan favorites on the evening were the Niedermayer Brothers, J.S. "Jiggy" Giguere, Chris Pronger, but by far the loudest crowd reaction was for Teemu Selanne.. rumored to be ready to announce his retirement, and who spoke to a rounding rendition of "One More Year" chanted by the crowd. Selanne was humbled, but declined to make a decision at this time.
This writer grew up on the ice; right here in Southern California where he saw his first hockey game, watching the Los Angeles Kings at the Fabulous Forum in 1967-- Its been 40 years in the wait, but once and for all, now everyone knows what I always knew: with our beaches, our palm trees, our mountains and our deserts... Southern California is a Hockey Town!