Thursday, September 6, 2007

Fence-sitting Duck

Who holds press conferences to reiterate the status quo? Scott Niedermayer and the Anaheim Ducks, that's who. Now, Niedermayer certainly shouldn't be rushed into making a decision that will determine not only his career, but essentially the rest of his life, but holding a press conference with anticipation building as to whether or not a decision will be made, then stating basically nothing seems so ridiculous, so blatantly unnecessary that I would go so far as to say it breaks the primary statute of press conferences: Thou shalt only hold a press conference if thou has something to say that is worth printing in the press. Ironically enough, part of the reason Niedermayer will eventually attain hockey immortality in the Hall is his sound, decision-making ability on the ice. Apparently, this doesn't translate too well to off-ice decisions.

But one thing you can say about Niedermayer's drawn-out retirement affair is that he's kept us updated every step of the way. Initially, he made it clear he was preparing to retire and had essentially filed his papers on July 1st before getting cold feet. Two weeks ago, the Hall of Fame-bound defenseman stated that he might consider coming back, but he would miss training camp and arrive only after the Ducks' London series against Los Angeles. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the other future Hall of Fame Duck contemplating retirement, winger Teemu Selanne, hasn't said a word regarding his future hockey plans since stating in passing following the Ducks' Cup win that he was considering "going out on top." The Hockey News reported earlier this week, however, that Selanne's retirement is more of a sure thing. As a Sharks' fan, it's hard not to root for these guys to throw in the towel, which would make the Ducks an exponentially easier draw, but with the teal-colored shades off, these are two phenomenal, outstanding careers that are destined to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame, and for that reason, neither should be backed into a decision due to impatient fans. The irrelevant press conferences, however, have to cease.

In other hockey-related news, the Sharks announced today that they will begin selling tickets to regular-season games September 15th at the HP Pavilion box office as well as Ticketmaster. What the statement didn't mention, however, was whether ticket prices will be slashed in the wake of the Red Wings' announcing the inception of $9 tickets. Of course, San Jose isn't home to a declining automobile industry and all Sharks playoff games sold out (Take that, Hockeytown!...even if the Wings are the reason there weren't more postseason sellouts at the Tank last year), but it's a thought.

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