Report: Winning All-Star team could get a million bucks

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The NHL has come up with a unique way to make the players try harder in the All-Star Game.

It’s going to bribe them.

From TSN’s Bob McKenzie, who has the details of the new 3-on-3 tournament format:

It’s believed there’ll be a significant sum on the line for the 11 members of the winning team, perhaps as much as (say it in your best Dr. Evil voice) one million dollars. That’s almost $100,000 per player on the winning team. Is that enough motivation to play at a brisk, entertaining pace for 40 minutes of 3-on-3?

Again, we’re going to find out, and that’s really the takeaway here: if this doesn’t work, nothing will.

Well, I’m not sure “nothing” would work. Didn’t Homer take Bart’s turtle hostage in The Simpsons’ hockey episode? (“Well, boy, you won. So I’m going to live up to my side of the agreement: Here’s your turtle, alive and well.”)

Do any NHLers have turtles? I feel like Brent Burns definitely has a turtle.

Anyway, I wrote yesterday that the biggest problem with last year’s game was the pace. Nobody wants to see the best hockey players in the world mess around for 60 minutes. After the first five or six goals, it gets kinda repetitive. And last year, there were 29 goals scored. That damn cannon in Columbus.

The NHL is expected to officially announce the format later today.

The All-Star Game is scheduled for Sunday, Jan. 31, in Nashville.