01/08/16 by Matthew S. Vandriak
Alex Ovechkin. John Tavares. Evgeni Malkin. Steven Stamkos. Patrick Kane. Jamie Benn. Jonathan Quick. Those are some of the names on this year's NHL All-Star roster. Oh, and John Scott.
Yes, that John Scott. If you're a real hockey fan you know who I'm talking about. If not, this John Scott has played all of 11 games for a total of under 70 minutes of hockey so far this season. Sidney Crosby is not in this year's NHL All-Star Game. John Scott is. A guy who has been considered the face of the NHL over the past 10 years will not be a part of the All Star game. Henrik Sedin will not be in the All-Star Game. But Scott, a guy who has spent parts of this season in the AHL and more time as a healthy scratch than on the ice, will be there. Yes, Stanley Cup winning goaltender Corey Crawford isn't an All-Star, but a guy who's scored 5 goals in 285 career games is. Really? Yes, really.
This is nothing against John Scott. For one, he's 6'8" and 270 pounds, and has made most of his living in the NHL as an enforcer. Not exactly someone I'd want to have a problem with. And with fighting dying off in the NHL, and with the days of the enforcer coming to an end, good for John Scott.
Even more fitting for a man of Scott's physical stature, this year's NHL All-Star Game is going to be a 3 on 3 format. There will be 4 divisional teams facing off in two, 20 minute games. The winners will then play for the "championship" in a third 20 minute game. What? Exactly.
But the problem here is with the fan voting. Scott's nomination came through the fan vote. Twitter and the internet caught wind of the campaign to get Scott into the game, it picked up steam, and an all star he is now. The All Star game concept, not just in the NHL, but in all professional sports, has become a mockery of what it once was. Nobody cares about these "exhibitions" any more. Most sports fans think of the All Star Games as a joke This fan vote definitely adds to the punch line.
So the former All Star game has been replaced with a skills competition of some sort with a team that will be captained by a career goon. Dear NHL, do us real hockey fans a favor. As a matter of fact, be the trail blazer for all of the other professional sports to follow. And stop having the all star game after this season to put an end to this all star shame.
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