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If You Could Read My Mind - Retired or Not ?

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So what does everyone think about players like Teemu Selanne and Scott Neidermayer retiring for half of a season or so, but then changing their minds and coming back to play for their previous team, the Anaheim Ducks? It doesn't seem fair to me. These guys are coming back fresh, while everyone else has been playing tough hockey for the past 4 months.

Just as "luck" would have it, Anaheim also benefited financially because they were close to going over the salary cap at the beginning the year. If those two players would have signed at the start of the season like everyone else, the Ducks would have had to move someone or they would have had to make a choice as to which player they needed the most. But since both players waited until recently to play, only a portion of their salary counts toward the cap and everything worked out squeaky clean for team GM Brian Burke. I'm surprised that other general managers aren't complaining about this intentional manipulation of the financial system.

Some fans might point out that Peter Forsberg just recently signed as well, and he hadn't played yet this year either. The big difference in my mind is that Forsberg was a true free agent. He didn't play for the Avs in the previous year and he opened his services up for bidding. Both Neidermayer and Selanne played head games for 4 months pretending that they were "undecided" about retiring, but then both coincidentally came running back to their previous team just before the trade deadline. They never intended to play for another team.

While many teams have had to suffer through numerous injuries to their star players, the Ducks also avoid that issue because both those players have less chance of being injured since they only have to play about one-third of the games that everyone else plays. Coincidentally, the Ducks are on a 6 game winning streak and have won 11 of their past 12 games.

I know of at least one team that I hope flops in the playoffs.

What do you think? I'll pose this question on a new poll, should the league allow this to happen in the future? Is it fair? Remember, just one vote per IP address.

Gordon Lightfoot