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LeBrun tells the story of Selanne’s Anaheim exodus

Almost 20 years ago, before the internet was in wide use, I still recall the yelling and screaming coming from Winnipeg when an Arizona-bound Winnipeg Jets team traded Teemu Selanne to Anaheim for Chad Kilger nad Oleg Tvrdovsky.

Even given that in February, 1996, there was no hope of keeping the Jets in Winnipeg, fans were absolutely furious, feeling that the Phoenix owners had sold away the franchise player for a promising Russian defenseman who'd have to play like the second coming of Paul Coffey and possibly a 20-goal-scorer--and the trade was seen as one final stab in the back for Winnipeggers because Selanne was both embraced by Manitobans and embraced a prairie province that still isn't exactly seen as a prime destination for NHL'ers who like things like above-freezing weather between November and February.

Given that Selanne's #8 is being retired by the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday night, ESPN's Pierre LeBrun picked a helluva time to tell the definitive story of a move that most certainly helped make the Ducks, and a trade that set back a Coyotes team that chose to rid itself of both Selanne and Alexei Zhamnov before the team ever took to the ice in Arizona:

It all began in Jack Ferreira's office one Friday afternoon in early February 1996.

"I was sitting there with [then-Anaheim coach] Ron Wilson. We had both kind of heard rumblings about Winnipeg maybe moving Teemu Selanne," Ferreira recalled to ESPN.com this week. "So we were talking about our team, and then talking about Teemu, and I just said, 'The hell with it.'"

Ferreira, general manager at the time of what were called the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, picked up the phone and called then-Winnipeg Jets GM John Paddock.

"I got him at his house," Ferreira vividly recalled. "I asked him flat-out: 'I heard these rumors, are you looking to move Teemu?' And he said, 'Well, we might.' So right then I said to him: 'I'll give you Oleg Tverdovsky.' Because I had to throw something at him to get his attention. ... John didn't say yes, he didn't say no. But I had his attention."

Selanne, whose No. 8 will be raised to the Honda Center rafters Sunday night, had heard the trade rumors but by this point had believed he would not be moved.

"Ten days before the trade, the new owners for Winnipeg called me," Selanne recounted this week. Richard Burke and Steven Gluckstern were the owners of the team then. "There were rumors that I might be traded; I remember we were in Washington and the owner called on game day and said, 'Don't worry about the rumors, nothing is going to happen. You're a big part of our future down in Phoenix.' I was glad he called, I didn't have to worry about that."

LeBrun continues...

Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: anaheim+ducks, teemu+selanne, winnipeg+jets

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“I got him at his house,” Ferreira vividly recalled. “I asked him flat-out: ‘I heard these rumors, are you looking to move Teemu?’ And he said, ‘Well, we might.’ So right then I said to him: ‘I’ll give you Oleg Tverdovsky.’ Because I had to throw something at him to get his attention. ... John didn’t say yes, he didn’t say no. But I had his attention.”

Wow, imagine having a GM who is aggressive and goes after wha he wants in a real effort to improve his team!

Posted by Garth on 01/11/15 at 01:34 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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