Teemu Selanne scratched for Game 4
Selanne told reporters after Wednesday's morning skate that he was a healthy scratch following the Ducks' 3-0 loss in Game 3. He said he was told of the decision Tuesday. Emerson Etem took Selanne's place.
"Of course, I'm disappointed," Selanne told the Orange County Register. "I want to play. I can't really control that right now. That's [coach Bruce Boudreau's] decision. Go from there."
The move angered much of the Ducks' fan base, including Selanne's 18-year-old son, Eemil, who posted a retort on his Twitter account: "ROSTER MOVE: Bruce Boudreau has been reassigned to Norfolk Admirals (AHL)."
Teemu acknowledged he thought the tweet was funny but also told Eemil to delete it.
"He sticks up for his dad, that's what families do," Selanne said, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Selanne also cleared the air with Boudreau as the team prepares for Game 5 on Friday.
"I told Bruce, 'It's a new day. The series starts now,'" Selanne said. "There's no hard feelings. It's playoff time, and I don't want to even think about any negative energy."
For his part, Boudreau told the Los Angeles Times after Wednesday's game that he understood the fan reaction to Selanne's benching.
"I knew exactly what it was going into it, I knew the reaction, and if I was a fan, I'd probably be upset, too," Boudreau said, according to the report.
"He's an icon, one of the greatest players ever. I just thought we'd need a physical player along the boards a little bit more. Emerson fits that bill, so the decision was made. As much as we all love him and what he's done for us, you've got to think of the team and what it needs to win at that specific moment. ... You've got to do what you think is the right thing to do for the team."
The 43-year-old Selanne is in his 23rd and final NHL season. He played in 64 regular-season games, and had nine goals and 18 assists.
Selanne had one assist and six shots on goal in the first three games of the series, and averaged 11:16 of ice time. He averaged 14:07 in the regular season.
"Well, obviously we lost the last game, and a lot of times the lineup is going to be different," Selanne told reporters Wednesday morning. "I didn't think that's anything new, but it is what it is."
Etem, 21, played in 29 games this season and had 11 points, seven of them goals.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.