They couldn’t have written the script any better if they tried. Teemu Selanne broke a five-all deadlock late in the third period to give the Winnipeg Jets Alumni a 6-5 victory over the Edmonton Oilers in the Heritage Classic Alumni Game at Investors Group Field.
Selanne scored on two penalty shots and also added three assists for a five point effort to lead the Jets to victory.
“It was amazing.” said Selanne. “I’ve always had a great relationship with the fans and people here. It was really special. I knew I was going to score too, so that was a good feeling.”
WATCH: Raw Winnipeg Jets Alumni Post Game Media Conference
Jets Alumni captain Dale Hawerchuk scored one goal and chipped in with an assist in the Jets win.
“The way it finished, I’m so happy for our fans.” said Hawerchuk. “Our fans got what they wanted today and I’m happy for them.”
WATCH: Raw Dale Hawerchuk Media Conference
Bob Essensa started the game in goal for the Jets and allowed just one goal in the first period. Daniel Berthiaume replaced him in the second and was tested immediately.
“Bob played great in the first period.” said Berthiame. “I’m like wow, now I got to go in there and I got to shut them down, and the first shot is a penalty shot. I’m like come on, you can’t do that to me.”
WATCH: Raw Daniel Berthiaume Interview
Jets Alumni forward Kris King found his scoring touch on Saturday with a pair of goals. He only scored 25 goals over his four seasons with the Jets and wasn’t exactly known for his scoring prowess.
“Think the pressures of playing for money was the biggest reason.” joked King. “Once they stopped paying me, I found my hands again.”
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Mike Eagles scored the other goal for the Jets.
The Oilers got two goals from Mark Messier while Craig MacTavish, Craig Simpson and BJ MacDonald also scored for Edmonton. It was probably the last time we’ll see Wayne Gretzky play in an alumni game. He only played sparingly and didn’t even record a point.
“The hockey obviously wasn’t great hockey.” said Gretzky. “But it was competitive and the game ended the way it should end, with the best player on the ice on the home team scoring a big goal.”
“When you don’t play, it’s a reminder of how hard a game it is.” said Messier.
“I probably should have trained a little harder.” said Coffey. “My flipping legs wouldn’t move out there.”
WATCH: Raw Edmonton Oilers Alumni Post Game Media Conference
The temperature at puck drop was 11.2 degrees Celsius. The 50-50 draw paid out almost $154,000. The announced attendance was 31,317. You know fans are taking an old timers game seriously when they boo an offside call. But the passion will surely ramp up on Sunday in the grand finale of the Heritage Classic when the Jets and Oilers of the present face-off in the first of their three meetings this season.