Don’t be confused by this title. It isn’t an All-Star caliber recap of something. It is a mediocre recap of an All-Star Event.

The Skills Competition

My one big criticism of the All-Star Weekend in Nashville was that Lee Brice was the headliner for All-Star intros. Really? It’s Nashville. Was literally every other musician busy that weekend? How did they end up with Lee Brice? The guy’s biggest hit is a song called “Parking Lot Party” for crying out loud. Anyway, the NHL was able to pull a major upset by getting Snoop D-O-Double G to DJ the intros for the Skills Competition. The only problem is that Snoop Dizzle pulls no punches for live TV (possibly NSFW video).

In fairness to Snoop, he probably had never heard about a radio edit until he walked off the ice. Do you think Snoop is a big radio edit guy? No. He didn’t even know that was a thing before Saturday. Oh well, a couple MFer’s won’t ruin the youth of America more than they already have been.

The first even was the Skills Relay. The Metropolitan absolutely killed it and won in a landslide, but there are only two things you need to know about this one. First, Ryan Suter missed an empty net from the top of the circle no less than five times. He barely even got a piece of the puck twice. Tragic. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. The second thing you need to know is this..

Silky indeed, Mr. Willis. Forget a dime, P.K.Subban can turn on a pin head.

Next up, we had the 4 Line Challenge. In a spur of horrible decision making, the NHL decided to take out the anything goes style shootout and replace it with the 4 Line Challenge. I’m not going to explain the rules of this event to you because I didn’t totally get them myself. What I do know is they took out an event that relies on creativity, skill, and personality and replaced it with one where it’s nearly impossible to score and implements luck more than skill. In spite of themselves, the NHL stumbled ass backwards into a highlight reel moment.

Mike Smith came in at the 11th hour and bailed the NHL out of an embarrassingly boring event.

Accuracy shooting was up next. Connor “McJesus” McDavid went and took 6 shots to hit the 4 targets in just over 15 seconds. Pretty impressive.

Then, Auston Matthews came in and pulled the rug right out from under McDavid by only needing 5 shots and completing that challenge in 12.2 seconds. “Savage move” as the kids would say.

Finally, Sidney Crosby strolls out and tells these young kids to GTFO. Crosby also fires 5 darts to hit the four targets, but he makes Auston Matthews look like a very handsome sloth as he pulls it off in 10.7 seconds for the win.

After the intermission, there were two events that were both about one player and one player only. Everyone tuned in to see Connor McDavid fly around the ice and break Dylan Larkin’s record for the fastest lap. Well, the second part didn’t happen but he won the event and flew around the ice on his full lap.

After losing the accuracy shooting to Crosby and Matthews then being unable to break Larkin’s record, you have to wonder if McDavid will ever be able to win big at the NHL level.

Once McDavid was done choking away the fastest skater record, it was time for the Shea Weber Show aka the Hardest Shot Competition. This year, he was slightly underwhelming but he still hit 102.8 mph which beat rookie Patrik Laine’s speed of 101.7 mph. This was after hitting speeds of over 108 mph in 2015 and 2016. This definitively shows that Nashville won the Subban-Weber trade. Still though..102.8…

The final event was the Discover shootout and there were two shots worth seeing. The only goal for the Pacific Division came off the stick of Ryker Kesler, Ryan Kesler’s son. He came down, went backhand to forehand, and beat Carey Price five hole. Vezina candidate my ass.

The second must see shot was actually a miss, but it was the only shot with any level of creativity and fun. Naturally, it came from the NHL’s greatest treasure Brent Burns.

The All-Star Game

To be honest, the games weren’t all that interesting. In the first game of the afternoon, the Pacific routed the Central 10-3. The Central looked a little slow and tired. I wonder if the below picture had anything to do with that.

Something tells me Patrick Kane, Tyler Seguin, Patrik Laine, and Nathan MacKinnon were probably enjoying themselves the night before the game as well.

Noticeable hangovers aside, the Central gave us a couple gems for goals like these two.

The Pacific Division played actual team hockey and brought nothing to the table in terms of highlights. What else do you expect from a team with Bo Horvat and Ryan Kesler?

In Game #2, the Metro beat the Atlantic 10-6. Any game involving the Metro Division was going to be fun because you had Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby playing side by side while be coached by Wayne Gretzky (John Tortorella missed due to a personal emergency). Early on, Wayne Simmonds and Sergei Bobrovsky stole the show with some quickness and slick puck handling respectively.

What happened next was truly magical. A goal by Alex Ovechkin assisted by Sidney Crosby. It was like seeing a unicorn or an Alabama fan with a degree from the university.

Ovi and Sid seemed to be getting pretty tight. According to the media, they loathe each other. Is it possible that some of it was drummed up to get TV ratings? Hmmmm.

The Metro went on to defeat the Pacific in the championship game, and head coach Wayne Gretzky finally had some success. It seemed like he had more fun in LA than his last stint behind the bench.

I may or may not be a little tiny bit biased, but this All-Star weekend just didn’t have the buzz around it that the 2016 weekend did in Nashville. Maybe it was because there was no John Scott story or that the 3-on-3 format wasn’t new, but I though the Nashville weekend was better from afar.

Some more great ASG weekend moments:

Justice Beaver gets crushed by Chris Pronger in the celebrity game.

Burnzie and Seguin have some fun in warm-ups.

P.K. Subban hog ties McDavid in the best defense anyone has played against him all year.

ALERT: Blocked shots in the ASG!

Alex Ovechkin: Waterboy extraordinaire.

That’s all from a fun(ish) weekend! Be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter as the playoff push begins!

LEAVE A REPLY