Tag: Team Staal


All-Star winning captain Nicklas Lidstrom proud of his game and his team

When Eric Staal and Nicklas Lidstrom were picked to be the captains of the all-star teams for the game this year their tasks were both tricky and seemingly simple. After all having to choose from a host of elite-level players isn’t really that hard to do. Picking the right combo to get his side a win is a bit more difficult though.

For Lidstrom, he’s happy for his team to get an 11-10 win over Team Staal and have fun while doing it.

“There’s no pressure really, it’s more fun than anything. It’s an honor to have my name to the team. I think we were all just having fun with it,” Lidstrom said. “They got one on us in the skills competition last night so we got our revenge today in winning.”

Lidstrom finished the game with a +7 rating and helped get his team get all the way back from a 4-0 hole in the first period hitting Matt Duchene with a beauty of a lead pass to spring him on a breakaway goal to tie the game at four.

“I had some time coming up the ice with the puck and I was just waiting for Matt to find an opening and cut across. He such a great skater I just had to let him get his speed up to get free.”

As for what Lidstrom thinks of the format with the draft, count him in as a big fan of the event and one that has more of a flare to it than the traditional East vs. West format. Getting to pick sides the way they did makes for a huge selling point for even the players.

“I think it made it a more exciting weekend. Everyone was anticipating the draft and what’s going to happen, who’s going to get picked first, who’s going to get picked last. Everything around the draft it created a lot of hype for it and I think the league liked that and the NHLPA did too.”

With Lidstrom being a 40 year-old veteran of the league, he knows that these kinds of events have more of a special meaning to him now and is moved to be seen as a leader in this game.

“I feel honored to be one of those players that’s been in the league a long time. I was very honored to be picked to be a captain for this weekend.”

Fans in Detroit might be used to these sorts of things from Lidstrom after 19 seasons, but for a day, fans across the NHL got a chance to see what it’s like to have him as a leader for a team. Turns out he might not make so bad of a general manager one day. I wonder what Steve Yzerman might think of that.

2011 NHL All-Star Game: Team Lidstrom leads Team Staal 7-6 after two periods

58th NHL All-Star Game

After a huge comeback in the first period to tie the game, Team Lidstrom again got down early in the period. This time Patrick Sharp and Kris Letang got Team Staal ahead 6-4 early but Team Lidstrom would bounce right back.

Anze Kopitar scored on a 2-on-0 break with Loui Eriksson to make it 6-5. Four minutes later, Steve Stamkos tied it up after getting some great passing from Martin St. Louis and Brad Richards. Team Lidstrom grabbed the lead just over a minute later when Daniel Briere ripped one past Carey Price to make it 7-6.

Despite all the scoring the stars of the period were Team Lidstrom goalie Jonas Hiller and Team Staal’s Carey Price. Hiller stopped 15 or 17 shots including some incredible stops in the splits to rob Jeff Skinner. Price too stood on his head saving 13 of 16 shots showing that the game isn’t just about offense.

If you’re looking for early front-runners for All-Star Game MVP, Patrick Sharp of Team Staal has a goal and two assists while Team Lidstrom’s Anze Kopitar has two goals.

2011 NHL All-Star Game: Team Staal and Team Lidstrom tied 4-4 after first period

58th NHL All-Star Game

After one period of the All-Star Game in Raleigh, Team Staal got the home fans worked into a frenzy jumping out to a 4-0 lead making it look like we’d have a romp on our hands. Alex Ovechkin, Paul Stastny, Patrik Elias, and Claude Giroux each had goals for Team Staal while Patrick Sharp had three assists.

The lead wouldn’t last as Team Lidstrom got it back starting with Anze Kopitar’s nifty move to beat Cam Ward. Lidstrom’s squad wouldn’t let up after that getting a stuffed-home shot by Dustin Byfuglien and then Loui Eriksson capitalizing off a Kris Letang turnover to Team Lidstrom’s Martin Havlat who set up Eriksson for the easy goal. The scoring was capped off by Matt Duchene’s breakaway goal tying the game thanks to Nicklas Lidstrom’s fantastic outlet pass.

As expected, the goalies took a beating that period. Marc-Andre Fleury and Cam Ward each stopped 10 shots out of 14 faced.

With Team Staal loaded with hometown guys it’s easy to see that they want to get rookie Jeff Skinner his first All-Star Game goal and make the place go crazy. His linemates Patrik Elias and Paul Stastny are doing a lot of work to try and set him up. Can you blame them? The RBC Center will go ballistic if Skinner lights the lamp.

2011 NHL All-Star Game – Pregame report


The NHL All-Star Game gets under way at 4 p.m. and with so many potential story lines that will go down in this afternoon’s game, there’s a few things to at least keep an eye on during the game.


We know Marc-Andre Fleury will start for Team Lidstrom but it hasn’t been announced yet who will start for Team Staal. The speculation says that hometown guy Cam Ward will get the nod to play the first period. If it’s not Ward, it’ll be either Carey Price or Henrik Lundqvist getting the nod.

If you’re not familiar with how the All-Star Game goes, each goalie will play for a period. It’s an easy way to either keep your team in the game or end up being part of a highlight reel of insane goals.

Teammate vs. Teammate

Seven different teams will have teammates squaring off against each other in this one. Having these sorts of showdowns is part of what helps make this format to the game a lot more interesting and the most intriguing face off comes with twin brothers Henrik and Daniel Sedin being on opposing teams for the first time. Henrik suits up for Team Lidstrom while Daniel is on Team Staal. Ryan Kesler joins Daniel on Team Staal as part of the Vancouver showdown.

Other teams with a taste of civil war to them have players getting a chance to score on their goalie teammates. Anaheim has Corey Perry (Staal) getting to fire pucks on Jonas Hiller (Lidstrom), Boston has Zdeno Chara (Staal) going against Tim Thomas (Lidstrom), and Pittsburgh has Kris Letang (Staal) going against Marc-Andre Fleury (Lidstrom).

Chicago will see Patrick Sharp be a one-man gang for Team Staal against his teammates Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, and Jonathan Toews for Team Lidstrom. Colorado has young gun Matt Duchene (Lidstrom) up against Paul Stastny (Staal) while the Flyers will have Daniel Briere (Lidstrom) go up against Claude Giroux (Staal).

Not-so secret key to the game: Chemistry

It’s not a real secret that keeping guys that play together on the same team together on the ice and both Team Staal and Team Lidstrom have plenty of representation that bring a little bit of chemistry together on the ice. Team Staal brings the thunder with hometown favorites Jeff Skinner and Eric Staal. Vancouver’s Ryan Kesler and Daniel Sedin and Washington’s Mike Green and Alex Ovechkin will look to bring the offense.

Team Lidstrom has the Blackhawks trio of Kane, Toews, and Keith to run out there when they need to. A pair of dynamic duos to watch will be Dallas’ Brad Richards and Loui Eriksson and Tampa Bay’s Steve Stamkos and Martin St. Louis. Mixing in any other forward with those pairs should work out rather nice. Minnesota’s Martin Havlat and Brent Burns will also get a chance to work things out as well.

Most important thing to remember

It’s all for fun and to show off everyone’s elite skill. If you find yourself getting agitated about the lack of hitting or defensive presence at all, you might need to take a breather and go for a walk to let that clear out of your system. These guys do want to win, but they’re not about to lay out and block shots to do it. Sit back and enjoy the show.

2011 NHL SuperSkills: Team Staal wins Elimination Shootout and SuperSkills Challenge


The NHL SuperSkills closed out with the Elimination Shootout. This meant that shooters had to score in order to advance further and for this round, it came down to the stellar Martin St. Louis and Corey Perry. Perry was able to hang in there the longest as hometown hero Cam Ward stopped St. Louis to win it for Team Staal. St. Louis was able to dazzle the fans with his two goals but was unable to win the event for Team Lidstrom.

Team Staal rolled to victory in the SuperSkills earning a 33-22 victory in points over Team Lidstrom closing out a dominant night for the hometown captain’s team.

This sets the table for tomorrow afternoon’s All-Star Game to see if Team Lidstrom can win the war after Team Staal won the battle tonight. That’s about as wildly overdramatic as it gets when it comes to the All-Star Game. Soak it in for a bit.