Monday, January 30, 2012

The 2012 NHL All-Star Game...*Yawn*

Ah yes, it’s that time of year during the NHL season. The annual NHL All-Star Game, this year held in Ottawa and featuring a slew of the NHL’s biggest names and faces. Well, the biggest names and faces that isn’t Sidney Crosby or Alex Ovechkin anyway. Granted they had legitimate excuses, i.e. Crosby has a broken neck and a concussion (slight exaggeration) and Ovechkin is just being a douche bag, but other than that this year was the same old, same old.

This year also marked the second year in a row the “draft” system was used to select the player representatives of the opposing team. Ottawa Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson led his team, while Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara led his, and a slew of players ranging from Evgeni Malkin, Corey Perry, the Sedin twins, Marian Gaborik, Phil Kessel, and more besides all joined in the festivities. There was the draft, there was the skills competition, and then there was the actual All-Star game itself.

In a nutshell, it was the same old shit.

Now I actually enjoy All-Star weekend for the most part, and this year was definitely better than last year’s affair for one solid reason: the NHL killed that ridiculous and just plain fucking retarded “Guardian Project” from last year that was the brain child of Stan Lee and an orangutan on angeldust. I’m not even kidding when I say that giving up on that abortion of an idea may have very well saved the All-Star game. I couldn’t imagine much of anyone, and I mean ANYONE, getting any kind of enjoyment out of that whole fiasco. Even small kids would have looked at that mess and said to themselves “what the fuck is this bullshit all about?”

But enough of my ranting, and on to the game itself. It was the typical All-Star game fare, with Chara’s team prevailing in the end and New York Rangers forward Marian Gaborik winning the game’s MVP award. At this point in my life as an NHL fan though, the All-Star game itself now comes off as being little more than the corporate handshaking, masturbatory event that every sports league presents every year. It just seemed more to be this time than ever before that the players themselves just didn’t give a shit for the most part. Granted we knew that veterans and future Hall of Famers Nicklas Lidstrom and Teemu Selanne requested to not be included prior to the selection process, and Ovechkin opted out citing his current suspension as the reason why he shouldn’t have to participate, but for some reason, this year just seemed to be different.

Although, we did learn a few things this time around. We learned that no matter what, getting picked last for anything is humiliating and makes for great media ribbing (Logan Couture went dead last this year after Phil Kessel was Mr. Irrelevant last year) while also awards said dead-last picked player with a new car (which the NHL provides because League execs feel bad about it apparently). We learned that singer/rapper/I don’t give a shit what he is Drake should never be allowed near a hockey rink. We also learned that Dion Phaneuf doesn’t have a vagina (possibly) and Flyers forward Scott Hartnell isn’t such a prick after all…but he’s still a ginger.

All things considered, this year’s All-Star Game was sort of fun in a way, but here’s hoping that the suits in the NHL office come up with some new ways to spice things up further down the road.

And when I say further down the road, I mean next fucking year.

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