The NHL announced the rosters for the 2011 All-Star game yesterday. In addition to 42 All-Star selections (24 forwards, 12 defensemen, 6 goaltenders), the league announced 12 rookies who will participate in the Honda NHL SuperSkills over the All-Star Weekend in Raleigh. Here are the rosters, 10 knee-jerk observations, and a healthy dose of obligatory snark.
- 5 of the 6 teams in Canada only have 1 representative. Then again, some people would say they only have one legitimate NHL team this year as well.
- Both the Blackhawks and Penguins have lead the league with 4 representatives (All 4 Pens were voted in, 2 Hawks were voted in). Fittingly, next year’s Winter Classic will be just be an All-Star game between the Pens and Hawks. Just to screw with people from Philly, they’ll host the game in the City of Brotherly Love.
- Detroit and Philadelphia only have 1 representative each. Really. Maybe there isn’t enough talent on either of those rosters.
- Four teams were completely screwed and their only representative will be rookies who only participate in the Honda NHL SuperSkills Competition: Michael Grabner for the Islanders, Florida’s Evgeny Dadonov, Coyotes’ defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson, and Sabres rookie Tyler Ennis. This would be the loophole where the NHL says, “Everyone gets a representative… oh, but not in the game.”
- Jonas Hiller is the only goaltender from the Western Conference. To be honest, I’m surprised they even voted Hiller in. So props for that one.
- I’m not sure how Mike Green was voted into the All-Star game this year. His production is down from past years and he’s still not the best defensive defenseman in the league (but not as bad as people make him out to be). If taking injuries into account, Drew Doughty has better stats—and HE didn’t deserve to make the team.
- It’s weird to see San Jose with only one member in the All-Star game, and it’s not someone from their usual HTML line (Heatley, Thornton, Marleau).
- Somehow, Henrik Zetterberg, who is tied for 6th in NHL scoring (and is a great two-way player), was not deemed as one of the best 24 forwards in the league.
- You can’t say someone is a snub unless you pick a player who isn’t as deserving. On that note, Phil Kessel is 60th in the league in scoring and backchecks as often as Sean Avery makes friends. I’m sure it happens, I just never see it.
|Toews, Jonathan *||CHI||F|
|Keith, Duncan *||CHI||D|
|Crosby, Sidney *||PIT||F|
|Malkin, Evgeni *||PIT||F|
|Letang, Kris *||PIT||D|
|Fleury, Marc-Andre *||PIT||G|
|St. Louis, Martin||TBL||F|
(* Voted in by fans)