The NHL is going to announce the rosters for the All-Star game this year right away, so what better way to waste both our time by me writing this article about who I think will make it to this irrelevant event, and you to read said article.
However, unlike previous years, there is a bit of a catch. The NHL is revealing the rest of their top-100 players at the All-Star game, including six active players, who will be attending the event. Let’s assume that, like the Score article suggests, Jaromir Jagr will be attending the event, but not playing. So, I’ll be picking the five other players in addition to this years deserving All-Stars.
James van Riemsdyk
Carey Price (captain)
Roberto Luongo (top 100)
Up front, Kucherov is one of two representatives of Tampa to make it, mainly because he leads the Atlantic in scoring with 39 points. Matthews isn’t too far behind with 35 points, and leads the division in goals with 21. Marchand is tied with Matthews in scoring, and cracks the list as the lone Bruin. Pacioretty joins the captain Carey Price with the Habs, thanks to his second place 19 goals in the division. Van Riemsdyk is the other Maple Leaf on the list, because you can’t have just one forward represent one of the highest scoring teams in the league. Finally, Zetterberg cracks the list because someone has to represent Detroit.
On the back end, Hedman leads the way, since he leads d-men in the division with 37 points, and is second amongst all skaters behind teammate Kucherov. Karlsson follows closely with 32 points, and makes it because you can’t have a 3v3 all-star game without Erik frickin’ Karlsson. Ristolainen qualifies because his 26 points isn’t terrible, and someone has to represent Buffalo.
Goalies are easy. Price is the captain, and while Rask isn’t far behind him, Luongo has had a good season, can represent Florida, and I think he might be on the top 100 list.
Now, I also think Zdeno Chara is a top 100 guy as well, but I think that he pulls a Jagr and just shows up. If the NHL makes him play, then swap Chara with Risto, and then Okposo with JVR. Problem solved.
Sidney Crosby (captain, top 100 player)
Alex Ovechkin (top 100 player)
Crosby and Ovechkin are no-brainers. They should both be on the top 100 list, and regardless, their both pretty good as well. Malkin is second in Metropolitan division scoring behind Crosby with 43 points, so he joins his fellow Penguin. Voracek is tied for third in this division with 39 points, leading the Flyers and is their obvious choice. Tavares and Hall both make it because someone needs to represent the Islanders and Devils…oh, and they’re also pretty good too.
On the back end, McDonagh and Werenski are tied for the division lead in d-men scoring with Schultz, who didn’t make it because of the over-saturated amount of Penguins. Also, the Hurricanes need a rep, so hello Jaccob Slavin.
In goal, Holtby and Bobrovsky are the clear choices. No one in the division is even close, so it’s no competition. The only way this changes is if they have Lundqvist in the top 100, which means he slides in the place of one of the two.
PK Subban (captain)
Kane is one of three Blackhawks to make the team, and he certainly qualifies, with a Central-leading 44 points. Tarasenko is only one point behind him, and is one of two Blues on the team. Panarin has 41 points this season, and might not make the team if the NHL (*shudders*) puts Toews on the top 100 list. Seguin is the third and final point per game player in the Central, so he will represent Dallas. Laine has had a tremendous rookie season with 37 points, and will make the team pending concussion, otherwise Mark Sheifele will take his place. Finally, MacKinnon makes it because the team needs an Av, although he could be swapped for Jarome Iginla if Iggy makes the top 100 list.
Subban is the captain, so no duh, while Shattenkirk is the other Blue with 26 points, second in the division behind Duncan Keith, who didn’t make it because there are enough Blackhawks on the team already. Finally, Byfuglien has been really good this season on the blueline as well, with 25 points for Winnipeg.
In net, Dubnyk and Crawford have both put up Vezina calibre numbers so far, so it should be an easy pick for both of them. Also, Dubnyk will fill the gap for the Wild.
Connor McDavid (captain)
Joe Thornton (top 100)
McDavid’s a no-brainer, being a captain and a really good player. Carter is second in league behind Crosby in goals with 22, so he will be one of two Kings representatives. Pavelski is having another excellent season with 37 points, so he will be one of two Sharks representatives. Gaudreau represents the Flames for the obvious reason of him being really good, with 27 points in 33 games. Horvat makes it because somebody has to represent the Canucks, while Thornton makes it because I think he makes the top 100 list.
On defense, Brent Burns is the perennial Norris candidate, so his 39 points make his case. Doughty makes it because he’s Doughty, and the NHL seems to think that he’s the best defenseman (I would’ve put Dougie Hamilton, but apparently he’s trade bait). Fowler has had a good season, and someone has to represent the Ducks.
In net,…yeah, that’s it. This is the cream of the crop. Okay, I could’ve put in Chad Johnson instead of Smith, but the Coyotes need someone, and he’s stood on his head quite a bit, so I’ll give it to him.
Too many Blackhawks, and I don’t think he’s hit the point where you can say that he’s a guaranteed top 100 player.
Fun fact: Nick Foligno, Michael Grabner, Paul Byron, Conor Sheary, Tyler Bozak, Josh Bailey, Patrick Maroon, Patrick Eaves, Sven Baertschi, and Nick Holden all have more points than Toews. Ryan Dzingel has just as many. In nine fewer games, Anthony Mantha has one fewer. Mark Letestu and Phillip Danault both have one fewer as well. See what I’m getting at? He hasn’t been an all-star this year. And he shouldn’t be on the top 100 list because he’s simply not that good. He probably will because the MSM can’t get enough of his two-way play, and had a whole thing with him and Crosby for long enough that people think he’s that good.
Drew Doughty (on the top 100 list)
The only reason he won the Norris last season is because of one of two reasons: 1) the MSM had a season long boner for him last year, or 2) Doughty threatened to cut off all media ties if he didn’t get a Norris (note: that’s only a rumour). I don’t have Karlsson on the list because he probably hasn’t played enough to get legitimate consideration, and since Karlsson is better than Doughty, the logic explains itself.