The Anaheim Ducks are trying to win a hockey game tonight at Bell Centre against the Montreal Canadiens, but the story of the night is the return of Saku Koivu to Montreal. The Ducks center, who spent the first 14 years of his career in Montreal, including 11 seasons as Canadiens' team captain, played his first game in Montreal since joining Anaheim as a free agent in 2009.
Before the game tonight, the Montreal crowd constantly cheered Koivu as he was warming up, several holding signs in support of the former Canadiens star. Then, after the national anthems, the crowd gave Koivu a prolonged standing ovation. Players from both teams skated to their respective benches, leaving the ice all to Koivu for over a minute as the crowd cheered. If you don't get goose bumps watching this, you have no soul:
Such an outpouring of emotion and support from a stadium full of fans make this one of the great moments in sports. Koivu then took part in the opening face off with center Scott Gomez of Montreal, who didn't even contest it as the referee dropped the puck. The Ducks currently lead 2-1 over Montreal late in the second period.
For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Anaheim Calling.