One of the unfortunate casualties of the NHL lockout was the All-Star Game in Columbus being canceled. While some don’t care for the mostly annual event, Ohio’s capital city was looking forward to hosting their first marquee NHL event since the 2007 draft.
According to Aaron Portzline of The Columbus Dispatch, the mayor of Columbus would like to know when, exactly, they’ll be getting their opportunity to host the All-Star Game.
Mayor Michael B. Coleman sent a letter to the league asking for the league to let them know if they have answers for their worries because they’d like to have the city prepared in advance. Getting things like hotels and convention centers booked and set aside in advance is kind of important.
Portzline notes the issue with wanting answers now is that the question over NHL participation in the Olympics in 2014 has yet to be answered and the league may have already picked out Toronto to host the 2015 All-Star Game on the sly. Making the city wait til 2016 seems a bit cruel, but it’s not unprecedented.
The 2005 All-Star Game that was wiped out by the lockout that season was supposed to be held in Atlanta but they didn’t get a make-up game until 2008. The same sort of interruption thanks to the Olympics in 2006 also happened then. Perhaps by 2016 the Blue Jackets might have all-stars of their own to tout.
As promised, Capitals star Alex Ovechkin rocked a pair of custom skates in honor of Russian Heritage Night on Thursday.
On his right skate, he paid tribute to the United States with a custom design, and paid tribute to his home nation on his left skate while taking the pre-game warm-up prior to facing the Columbus Blue Jackets.
He’ll be auctioning off the skates, as well.
From CSN Mid-Atlantic:
The skates were painted by noted custom shoe artists Nick Avery and Polo Kerber, whom Ovechkin personally selected. The skates feature the U.S. and Russia flags as well as the Capitol Building and Moscow’s St. Basil’s Cathedral.
Sidney Crosby has made news lately for his goal scoring and his use of the stick.
He speared Sabres forward Ryan O’Reilly below the belt the other night, and on Thursday he delivered a slash to Senators defenseman Marc Methot, who has since not returned to the game.
The slash rendered a finger on Methot’s left hand bloodied and injured. It certainly didn’t look good as Method (calmly) skated to the bench.
There was no call on the play.
Updated: Methot won’t return to this game.
Toronto’s talented rookies were back at it again Thursday, as William Nylander and Auston Matthews combined to set up the Maple Leafs’ first goal versus the New Jersey Devils.
Nylander added the second assist on the power play goal, giving him 35 helpers on the season.
That’s significant for a couple of reasons: He extends his point streak to 10 games, which sets a new Leafs rookie record. And the assist reportedly secured him another entry-level bonus:
The Anaheim Ducks have been without goalie John Gibson for almost two full weeks because of injury, but head coach Randy Carlyle provided reason for optimism on Thursday.
Per reports, Gibson took part in practice and Carlyle has said that his No. 1 netminder will play again during the regular season. Anaheim has nine games remaining on its schedule.
That’s good news for Anaheim heading into the post-season.
While Gibson has been out, Jonathan Bernier has stepped beyond his back-up role and provided solid goaltending for the Ducks during the stretch drive — which should also be a bonus for this club with the playoffs quickly approaching.
Bernier has wins in six of his last seven starts. In nine games this month, he has only twice allowed three goals or more.
The Ducks have fought their way back into contention for the Pacific Division with a recent surge that has coincided with San Jose’s current skid — only four wins in their last 10 games and four straight losses.
Related: Career back on track, Bernier hopes he can re-sign in Anaheim