In short: Giguere has been traded to Toronto for Toskala and Blake. The rookie with all the heart and passion this season has seen, Dan Sexton, got sent down. And yesterday Hiller got a 4 year contract worth 18 million. (This part was posted yesterday, 1.31.10... the following was updated today 2.1.10...)
I took time to collect my thoughts on the Giguere trade because in the words of Adam Brady "it was like a bolt of lightning-- you could see it coming from a mile away, but it still surprises you." I was expecting him to be moved after the team re-signed Hiller to 4 years. I just wasn't expecting it to be the very next day. I feel as though I wont be able to put things into the proper words that are deserved, but I'm going to try...
I've been a Ducks fan since 1997-98. That means that aside from Guy Hebert, J.S. Giguere has been the only #1 goalie I have known. He's been, by far, the best Ducks goalie to ever don the uniform. And just like that, the NHL reminds you why you should never be so quite attached to a single player. In an instant they can be on a completely different team, in a completely different country, on the complete opposite coast.
Ducks fans will remember him for being the sole reason the Ducks came within 1 game of the Stanley Cup in 2003. They will remember how heart breaking yet satisfying it was to see him win the Conn Smythe trophy that year. That image is engraved in my brain. They'll remember him throwing his gloves off like he couldn't get them off fast enough in 2007 as the clock wound down and the Ducks became the Stanley Cup Champions. And they'll remember him for making the Ducks who they were for 10 solid years.
I wish Jiggy nothing but the best in his new adventure in Toronto. He's back with his goalie coach Allaire, and he's back under Burke's wing. I hope Toronto fans get to know him for his dedication and passion to the game. I hope they understand soon what they got. I hope they learn to love him. Trades always bring a fan back to reality -- it's a business. And in this business, some shoes..or skates... are harder to fill than others.
So long, Giguere! I hope to someday see you retire your number here in Anaheim. Raise 35 to the rafters. Thank You, for the memories. Thank You, for everything.