Ten Things to Make the All-Star Game More Entertaining
With NHL All Star Weekend about to descend upon us, I have been reflecting on what it is I like about the game. I realized, that the actual game is not always that entertaining. I enjoy the Skills competition for the most part.
I kinda like the idea of the Fantasy Draft to determine teams, but here are a few other ways I think the weekend could be made more entertaining.
1. Pick Ovechkin Last – He’s got the sense of humour that could make it work. Conversely his competitive nature might raise his level and dominate the actual game. Can’t you just see hime playing it up and being all “Ommagawd, pick me! I’ll score goal. I swear GAA!”
2. Pick the Sedins #1 & #2 – It’s been discussed ever since the two were named to the game. One problem is that whoever picks second, would have to ignore a lot of talented players to select Daniel, not that he is a horrible pick, but… Either that or leave them both to the end and have last year’s Hart Trophy winner be the last pick.
3. Jeff Skinner First Overall – This young guy was chosen as a replacement and the game is in his teams hometown, but Skinner deserves to be there on his own merit. From all accounts the fans love the kid, and his jersey sales are outpacing traditional Cane faves Staal and Ward. Give the fans an extra 30 mins of Skinner All-Star jersey sales.
4. Game Ends 1-0 in Regulation – Who wouldn’t love to see the best players in the world battle it out in a hard-hitting, defensive battle. The winning goal should come off a clearing attempt by Lidstrom that goes off the goalie and in. Priceless.
5. Someone Fights – Anyone really, not in an overly serious way, but more of a WWF style (not the World Wildlife Fund. I grew up with the World Wrestling Federation. Stupid Pandas). Potential match-ups: Sedin v. Sedin; Chara v. Skinner; Staal v. Staal…Wait, how about a tag match? The Sedin’s v. The Staals? “And here comes Jordan out of the crowd with a steel chair.”
6. Goals Only Count if you Call Your Shot – This is what makes an All-Star game fun.
Please disregard the FoxTrack as the horrible experiment that it was. This was the best quality video I could find.
7. Make Shoot the Duck and Goal Celebrations part of the Skills Competition – I could never Shoot the Duck, and I always was amazed by those that could. I would like to see how well NHL players do it. Make them all try.
Also, while they have made trick goals a competition, I think that post-goal celebrations should be considered as part of the judging as well. I mean, Ovechkin got lot of credit just for his pre-shot routine in Montreal.
8. Take it to the Street/Pond – This year’s All-Star Game Players’ Draft is all about getting back hockeys informal roots, hence why the game is in Carolina. Errr, right. But I never remember picking teams and being worried that I had picked my defencemen by the round 15. Don’t worry about positional requirements. I agree with them in terms of selecting the players eligible for the game, but if Nik Lidtrom wants to load his team with forwards so he can play back the whole game, be my guest. Even better, think if a skater had to don the pads for a period. That would be fun to see.
Personally, I have been an advocate of tossing everyone’s stick in the middle and tossing the to either side one by one to determine the teams.
9. Where These –
10. Take it Outside – I know. Kinda sounds like #8, but wouldn’t it make sense to make the All-Star Game an outdoor game. Here is an exhibition that will have no bearing on standings or playoffs hopes. Who cares if the ice isn’t optimal or the conditions don’t permit? I suppose it’s a little tough in Raleigh, but they held an outdoor game in Mexico.
Anyway, these are just a few thoughts off the top of my head. Some serious; some, not so much. What would you like to see done different?