I’ve always hated All Star fan ballots. What I really hate is when the league just blindly goes along with it and report on it as though the results were somehow legitimate. Several years ago, it was the Habs show, and this year, it’s the Sens show. As a result, your starting NHL All Star Lineup will be:
Forwards: Jason Spezza (OTT), Daniel Alfredsson (OTT), Milan Michalek (OTT)
Defensemen: Erik Karlsson (OTT), Dion Phaneuf (TOR)
Goalie: Tim Thomas (BOS)
Yeah, I agree with Tim Thomas and Erik Karlsson. But the forwards? Oh please. Spezza and Michalek are having good seasons, and they may end up on the roster at the end of the day, but starters? No. Alfredsson shouldn’t even be an All Star this season. Phaneuf’s playing well, but what about Dan Girardi or Zdeno Chara?
It’s never good to whine about a problem without offering a solution, so I’ll make my All Star selections. And to make it a little easier on myself, I’ll split it up between the Eastern and Western Conferences:
Forwards: Steven Stamkos (TB), Claude Giroux (PHI), Phil Kessel (TOR)
Defensemen: Erik Karlsson (OTT), Dan Girardi (NYR)
Goalie: Henrik Lundqvist (NYR)
Forwards: Henrik Sedin (VAN), Jonathan Toews (CHI), Pavel Datsyuk (DET)
Defensemen: Shea Weber (NSH), Nicklas Lidstrom (DET)….safe pick? Safe maybe, but always right.
Goalie: Brian Elliott (STL)
This year’s Winter Classic was amazing. The game was physical and played at a very high pace. Congratulations to the Rangers for digging themselves out of a 2 goal deficit with the Flyers really taking it to them at that point. They proved that they deserve to be considered one of the elite teams in the NHL.
As great as the game was, what happened afterwards at a local Philadelphia steak shop was absolutely disgusting. There is no excuse for anything that happened there and the quicker that they put those clowns in prison, the better. It puts a black eye not only on the city of Philadelphia, but also the NHL and sports in general.
The Canucks completely avenged their Cup loss to the Bruins yesterday! Yeah, not really, but that’s what all of the headlines say. And that’s exactly how no one in the world feels about it. A few things to take away from the game though…
Good job by the NHL acknowledging that Milan Lucic was incorrectly tossed from the game for leaving the bench. Bad job by Brad Marchand taking Salo out. I don’t think that Marchand intended to hurt him, but it was completely unnecessary to go down that low when it was pretty clear that Salo was at most only going to lightly bump shoulders with him. I think Shanahan will have him sit one or two games.
Has anyone had worse luck with injuries than the Pittsburgh Penguins over the last few years? It was just announced that Jordan Staal (knee) and James Neal (broken foot) will each miss weeks of action due to their injuries. They’ll be joining Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang in the press box. The Penguins are in trouble as they’ve already fallen behind the Devils for 4th in the Atlantic Division, so they’ll have to circle the wagons to keep themselves afloat.
But they’ve dealt with a lot of injuries over the past few years, so while this is worse than usual, this isn’t anything new. They still have guys like Malkin and Fleury and Orpik and the young players they call up usually perform pretty well. Don’t count them out yet.
Congratulations to Jarome Iginla for reaching 500 career goals. It’s an incredible accomplishment and he deserves to be considered one of the greats in the game.
The NHLPA has rejected the league’s realignment plan with a list of grievances about it. My first reaction was “Great!” but then I thought “Why did they wait this long?”
My plea is that they figure something out before things start getting too late.