When Jeff Skinner was named to the NHL All-Star Game today as an injury replacement along with Colorado’s Paul Stastny it meant that he was promoted from the group of rookies up into the big squad for the game itself. It also meant that Skinner was getting an extra special recognition for being named to his first all-star game.
When Skinner was named to the team he became the youngest All-Star of all time. At 18 years and 259 days old, Skinner broke the record set by Steve Yzerman back in 1984 as the youngest all star. Yzerman when he was named to the team was 18 years and 267 days old. With 18 goals and 22 assists this year, Skinner has proven that Carolina didn’t make a mistake taking him in the first round of the 2010 NHL Draft and bringing him right to the NHL.
While many other first round picks either stay in junior or college hockey, Skinner made the Hurricanes right out of camp and he’s shown that while he’s the NHL’s youngest player, he certainly doesn’t play like it. Whether he’s centering a line or playing on the wing of Eric Staal, Skinner’s shown an incredible knack to get to the net and helping set up his teammates. That sort of maturity is rare amongst players that young and for the Hurricanes, he’s done well to help them stay within striking distance of the playoffs.
Skinner gets a great reward for his hard work in his first year and now gets to take the ice at home in Raleigh alongside teammates Staal and Cam Ward. Fellow rookie teammate Jamie McBain also will appear this weekend taking Skinner’s spot amongst the rookie skaters for the NHL SuperSkills challenge on Saturday night.