My impression of the All-Star Weekend so far: well done. I mean, let's face it, this is all about the stars of the league interacting with fans and having a little fun. Friday's draft was quite entertaining, once TSN let them actually draft and stop interrupting with boring interviews after the first couple of picks. The new slant on the skills competition was a great call - having them go head to head. And then ALL the players in a shootout competition was another great call. I haven't paid that much attention to the skills competition since the lockout.

 

So with a bit of pride on the line, will the ASG be a little more competitive today? A little? I think so. But we'll see soon, I guess. Don't forget, The Guardians will be revealed in the second intermission - make sure your kids are tuned in, I think they'll be quite interested. Get them attached to the brand early, and it's easier to win them over as hockey fans later. Because familiarity equals comfort.

 

The hardest shot was a record 105.9 from Chara, of course. Shea Weber was second. But this makes Benoit Pouliot's 102 mph last Sunday so much more impressive. With his size, and his cannon, if he can find that consistency he'll be a good one.

 

I updated the Guardian Project column with "The Islander". Just missing "The Thrasher". But we'll see all of them in action today.

 

PK Subban has become my third favorite player, after Sid and Gino. Yes, he's passed Sean Avery. Subban's smile is contagious, and I'm glad he's not letting the media and internet whiners (and the boring veteran players) get to him. Throwin on Skinner's sweater to shoot against his goalie Price was classic..

 

Ovechkin won the fancy shootout competition, Daniel Sedin was the sharpshooter (four targets in 7.3 seconds, how about that?)

 

Corey Perry won the elimination shootout competition - the regular one where you just had to score to stay in.

 

I can't believe the Caps signed Alex Semin to another year. I think they should have let him walk, then bumped Eric Fehr up to the second line and then got Kuznetsov out of his KHL contract. With the $6 million-plus saved, they could shore up their weaknesses, or save it for a big deadline deal.

 

All of the young NHL players who have yet to earn full-time spots have been sent to the AHL to save their teams a few bucks. Including: Mathieu Perreault, Zach Boychuk, Mikkel Boedker, etc. I would expect most to be called back up for Tuesday.

 

Marty St. Louis - elimination shootouts:

 


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Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
Gino Gino... with an I? Really?
January 30, 2011
Votes: +0

STONE. said:

STONE.
Skills Comps I'd love the NHL to add another twist to the weekend. Add a day and have every team have their own skills comp (and perhaps charity game) evening. Then, instead of having the All-Stars compete, send the best individual skills guys to the skills comp.

I'd love to see who is actually the fastest skater, hardest shooting, etc. I'd like to see Omark, Schremp, etc. all get a shot in the breakaway.

It'd also get every franchise a shot to host a mini all-star game prior to the big one and then root for their representatives in the big matchups (like an NHL Olympics).

It'd be a great competition and would undoubtedly sell.
January 30, 2011
Votes: +0

Eric said:

Hockey Hoser
All Star and Subba I also have to agree the all star break has been terrific. Kudos to Carolina. The relay competition was my favourite and really showed off some serious skillz. The angles for the one-timers, the accuracy saucer passes, stick handling the pylons....wow!!!

I like Subban, I think his personality is great for the branding of the game. But I also think alot of people confuse his personality with his hockey actions. They're seperate and we should treat them so.
January 30, 2011
Votes: +0

GB said:

Front89
Subban Subban is fun-loving, flashy and confident, but as a young player earning respect and producing substance is part of the deal and should be in my eyes...the "boring veterans" who think Subban is a little too flashy, too cocky and has not produced much substance yet are right and certainly if Subban is going to punch Richards's teammate with his gloves on and then not fight when challenged, veterans like Richards are going to bring him to account and they should....be a man and if you are going to talk smack and rough things up, then be prepared to back it up on the ice where it matters...his coach also saw the same things and scratched him until he got his crap together...some of that also had to do with his poor defensive play, maybe he should focus more there than running his mouth.
January 30, 2011
Votes: -2

CHR17 said:

CHR17
All-Star Game I have really enjoyed the all-star weekend so far. I never disliked it in the first place like some people but they have definetely stepped it up. There are a few things i think the NHL could still do to make it better. I would like to some sort of agility/quickness contest without the puck. Also have a local minor hockey goalie be in net for the hardest shot......just kidding, ha. I think the game today is gonna be more competitive which is gonna be alot of fun to see.
January 30, 2011 | url
Votes: +0

Jim Hall said:

Haller
I agree ... Best skilz comp I can remember and I would expect some more tweaks going forward will make it better.

Other than the hardest shot, every event had major changes and I liked 'em all. They also clearly preset the individual matchups which is the only way to go.

Brendan Shanahan desrves huge props, imo.
January 30, 2011
Votes: +0
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