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Friday, January 23, 2009

The NHL Wants to Suspend Players Who Skip the All-Star Game

In a desperate attempt to make the NHL All-Star Game legitimate after doing so much that has made it a joke the NHL has decided that "it will enforce an understanding that all players who decline to show after being named to the All-Star teams must miss at least one game before or one game after the All-Star weekend." [TSN]

Maybe the NHL should have spent some time trying to legitimize the game BEFORE it became a huge joke.

The game was a joke before a few players decided to skip it. In fact, the players are skipping the game BECAUSE it's a joke.

The game is a joke because the ballot included injured players who were not going to play regardless of how many votes they got. The game is a joke because the NHL implemented a weak voting system that was easily exploited by numerous fans. The game is a joke because they allowed - and encouraged - ballot box stuff via electronic means. The game is a joke because it's on Versus (at 6PM on a Sunday - no one is watching TV then unless football is on.)

The NHL knows the All-Star game is a joke but instead of fixing any of those very obvious problems they are instead going to punish players who would rather take a week off to rest and help their teams than attend a useless exhibition game.

This morning I mentioned that Sidney Crosby made the right decision by skipping the game. Now instead of resting his injury he is "is en route to Montreal and will arrive early this afternoon to fully participate in all off-ice All-Star activities." [TSN]

My suggestion to the NHL is this: If you don't want your All-Star Game to be a joke you need to actually fix what's wrong with it. Forcing players to attend just looks pathetic and ruins the reputation of the game even further.


CapsFan said...

Sadly I didn't see this until just now, but I stood with you:

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