Much like former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom, Anaheim Ducks forward Teemu Selanne has reached a zenith where even opponents flat-out worship him.

The Wings host the Ducks tonight at Joe Louis Arena. While the overwhelming focus naturally is on pocketing two points, it's impossible not to appreciate what Selanne is doing at 42: leading his team with 14 points in 12 games.

"He's like fine wine," Wings coach Mike Babcock said Thursday. "He's as good as ever. The thing about Teemu, too, is he loves being around the game and loves having fun. His disposition is such that he's fun to be around, and he's been an unbelievable ambassador for the game. He's been spectacular since Day 1. He's pretty good, I'd say."

Goaltender Jimmy Howard, slated to start tonight, said: "It's always a lot of fun when you get to go up against him. What he's doing, it's amazing. It still looks like he's got years left. He's just an extremely smart player, and extremely skilled."

That echoes what players around the NHL used to say about Lidstrom, who retired last summer but who is in town for a few days and is expected to watch tonight's game from owner Mike Ilitch's suite. Lidstrom was at Wednesday's game, and teammates who saw him noted that "he looks like he could still play."