This year the NHL is introducing a new all-star format where a captain and two assistant captains draft of all of the players for their team in a “school yard draft”. Some of the possible captains include Sidney Crosby, Nicklas Lidstrom, Zdeno Chara, Eric Staal, Rick Nash, Alexander Ovechkin, Jarome Iginla, or Jonathan Toews.
If I had to choose a starting line-up it would be high octane and offensively focused. The all-star game is usually a high scoring affair with each team getting on the better side of 10 goals. I will also be looking for size, speed, and skill.
My starting center is the most obvious choice in the book, Sidney Crosby. Sidney is the best player in the league right now. He leads the league in goals, points, and is third in assists. He is a scoring machine with a 25 game point streak under his belt this season. Sidney is strong, skilled, fast, and can play in all situations.
On Crosby’s wing another obvious choice, Steven Stamkos. Stamkos is only one goal behind Crosby and has a deadly shot. With Crosby getting him the puck Stamkos surely will light the lamp at least once in the all-star game.
On the other side is a more shocking choice. I chose Martin St. Louis from the Tampa Bay Lightning. St. Louis is second in assists and has amazing chemistry with Stamkos, which is why I chose him.
Some of the forwards that were close to making the starting line-up were both Sedin twins, Ovechkin, Toews, Kane, Staal, and Perry. I didn’t choose the Sedins because they are most effective together and have not proven themselves apart. Ovechkin has lost a little bit of his scoring touch as of late and Toews, Kane, Staal, and Perry are all great players, but don’t have the chemistry that St. Louis and Stamkos have. If I had to choose a second line it would consist of the Sedin twins and Ovechkin.
On defence I am still going with offensive players starting with Dustin Byfuglien. The Big Buff is a monster leading all defensemen in goals and points. He is dangerous offensively and physically stopping the opposing team’s offensive threats with his size.
For his partner I have to go with Tobias Enstrom. Enstrom is second in defenseman assists and have great Thrasher’s chemistry with Byfuglien. Enstrom is small, but very skilled and is one of the best passers out of the league’s skilled blue liners.
Other defensemen that should be considered for being part of an all-star team’s top pair are Nicklas Lidstrom, Mike Green, Duncan Keith, Kris Letang, and Dan Boyle. Of those players I would choose Lidstrom and Keith as my second pair.
Finally in net, I have to choose Tim Thomas. His play has been undeniably stellar all season. He has been diving all over the net making high light reel saves every night and allowing less than 2 goals most nights.
The other top goalies in this game include Lundqvist and Ward. Personally I would choose Cam Ward because since the Hurricanes Stanley Cup win, Ward has been one of the best goalies in the league even though he has had some big injuries. I still believe that the final goaltending spot in the 2010 Olympics was Ward’s if he didn’t get hurt.
The fact that my entire starting line-up is all Eastern Conference players is purely coincidence. These players deserve to be there, but any of the players playing in this game can be easily substituted into the first or second team and have a different but positive impact.
My line up looks like this:
My second team is: