NHL All-Star Game rosters set after fantasy draft

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The rosters for the 2015 NHL All-Star game have been decided. Drink it all in, hockey fans.

We saw it all tonight, didn’t we?

Phil Kessel wasn’t taken last, selected second overall by Team Toews, and then traded to Team Foligno for Tyler Seguin. Alex Ovechkin so desired a new car and didn’t get one.

Here are the rosters for both All-Star teams.

TEAM FOLIGNO:

Forwards: Nick Foligno, Patrick Kane, Ryan Johansen, Anze Kopitar, Steven Stamkos, Phil Kessel, Claude Giroux, Bobby Ryan, Radim Vrbata, Zemgus Girgensons, Alex Ovechkin, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.

Defensemen: Drew Doughty, Duncan Keith, Dustin Byfuglien, Brent Burns, Kevin Shattenkirk, Oliver Ekman-Larsson.

Goalies: Carey Price, Marc-Andre Fleury, Brian Elliott.

TEAM TOEWS:

Forwards: Jonathan Toews, Ryan Getzlaf, Rick Nash, Tyler Seguin, Jakub Voracek, John Tavares, Vladimir Tarasenko, Patrice Bergeron, Patrik Elias, Tyler Johnson, Filip Forsberg.

Defensemen: Shea Weber, Brent Seabrook, Aaron Ekblad, Ryan Suter, Mark Giordano, Justin Faulk.

Goalies: Corey Crawford, Roberto Luongo, Jaroslav Halak.

Girgensons, Vrbata favored to go last at fantasy draft, says oddsmaker

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For the record, Friday is Media Day for the 2015 All-Star weekend, not Pick on Zemgus Girgensons Day.

Brovada released some 2015 All-Star odds today, covering obvious questions such as who will be selected first and last during the fantasy draft (as well as more esoteric ones, like Jaroslav Halak and Carey Price being on the same team).

Let’s start with who might be selected last:

Who will be picked last in the 2015 NHL All Star Draft 
Any Other Player                       3/1
Zemgus Girgensons (BUF)         4/1
Radim Vrbata (VAN)                  4/1
Patrik Elias (NJ)                        5/1
Bobby Ryan (OTT)                     6/1
Tyler Johnson (TB)                    6/1
Phil Kessel (TOR)                      9/1
Vladimir Tarasenko (STL)           15/1
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (EDM)     15/1
Tyler Seguin (DAL)                    20/1
Patrice Bergeron (BOS)             30/1
Jakub Voracek (PHI)                  30/1
Claude Giroux (PHI)                   50/1
Alex Ovechkin (WAS)                100/1
Steven Stamkos (TB)                 100/1
Ryan Johansen (CLB)                100/1
Anze Kopitar (LA)                      100/1
John Tavares (NYI)                    100/1

(Don’t sleep on the “one of the captains outright trolling a friend and/or teammate,” by the way.)

On the flip side, who might get selected first?

Who will be picked first in the 2015 NHL All Star Draft 
Alex Ovechkin (WAS)                2/1
Steven Stamkos (TB)                 2/1
Ryan Johansen (CLB)                4/1
Duncan Keith (CHI)                    10/1
Corey Crawford (CHI)                 10/1
Shea Weber (NAS)                    12/1
Anze Kopitar (LA)                      30/1
John Tavares (NYI)                    30/1
Phil Kessel (TOR)                      30/1
Brent Seabrook (CHI)                 40/1
Carey Price (MON)                     40/1
Claude Giroux (PHI)                   40/1
Patrice Bergeron (BOS)             40/1
Tyler Seguin (DAL)                    40/1
Any Other Player                       40/1
Zemgus Girgensons (BUF)         50/1
Jakub Voracek (PHI)                  50/1
Vladimir Tarasenko (STL)           50/1
Jaroslav Halak (NYI)                  80/1
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (EDM)     80/1
Ryan Suter (MIN)                       80/1
Tyler Johnson (TB)                    80/1
Bobby Ryan (OTT)                     80/1
Marc-Andre Fleury (PIT)             80/1
Roberto Luongo (FLA)               80/1
Mark Giordano (CAL)                 80/1
Brent Burns (SJ)                        100/1
Dustin Byfuglien (WPG)             100/1
Erik Johnson (COL)                   100/1
Justin Faulk (CAR)                     100/1
Kevin Shattenkirk (STL)              100/1
Patrik Elias (NJ)                        100/1
Radim Vrbata (VAN)                  100/1
Oliver Ekman-Larsson (PHO)      100/1

Despite being one of the better offensive defensemen in the NHL, Oliver Ekman-Larsson said he wouldn’t be shocked if he went last:

As far as who will win, Team Toews is at even odds while Team Foligno’s -140 (5/7). Finally, some of the odder bits:

Will Carey Price (MON) and Jaroslav Halak (NYI) be on the same All Star Team?        
Yes                  EVEN   (1/1)
No                    -140      (5/7)
 
Will Ryan Johansen (CLB) and Nick Foligno (CLB) be on the same All Star Team?     
Yes                  – 200     (1/2)
No                    +150     (3/2)
 
Will Jonathan Toews (CHI), Corey Crawford (CHI), Duncan Keith (CHI) and Brent Seabrook (CHI) and be on the same All Star Team?   
Yes                  +550     (11/2)
No                    -900     (1/9)

Is anyone else a little disappointed that “uncomfortable Phil Kessel facial expressions” wasn’t a category? (Taking over-four.)

Canes’ Ward on trade speculation: ‘Whatever happens, happens’

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Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward is going about his business as usual.

Despite believing he would be dealt last summer and then having his name mentioned in trade rumors, Ward has moved on.

“There was a lot of chatter about it last year and I learned a lot from that too,” Ward told PHT this week. “This summer I was really able to take a break mentally and realize that I can only control what I can control – that’s just having fun and enjoying the game of hockey.

“I’ve been able to do that a lot more this year.”

Ward says he turned to his family to help him get through a tough summer.

“I just look to my family and my supporting crew,” he said. “Just block (rumors) out and try to focus on the game. Whatever happens, happens.”

His wins-loss record (11-17-3) may not look impressive as the league pauses for the NHL All-Star Game, but his save percentage (.911) is as good as its’ been since the 2011-12 season.

“We’ve done a much better job helping him know where shots are going to come from,” Canes’ GM Ron Francis recently told Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

The highlight of the season for Ward came in November when he won five straight starts and the team went 5-0-1.

“I feel good,” says Ward of his game. “I mean obviously October we got off to a slow start as a team, but come November, the beginning of November, up until now I feel very strong in my game. Been able to work on a lot of things with (Hurricanes goaltending coach) David Marcoux, who has been a great help for me.”

With the March 2nd trade deadline fast approaching, Ward’s name is sure to come up again; however, even with all the chatter, Ward says he doesn’t believe he’ll be traded now.

“To be honest… I’m just going about my business and trying to win hockey games for the Hurricanes,” said Ward. “I’ve been fortunate to be a part of this organization for a long time and I want to keep it going.”

In order for Francis to deal Ward, the 30-year-old would have to waive his no-trade clause.

“I’m not even going to think about that,” said Ward.

With the Canes’ in the middle of a 6-2-1 stretch since Jan. 1, and the team getting healthy, Francis certainly has a lot to think about in the next five weeks.

PHT Morning Skate: More on Metallica and the Sharks

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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

So, uh, apparently San Jose Sharks and Metallica teamed up for a special night last night. This post’s main image is one example of … “#MetalliSharks” (Kinda looks more Danzig than Metallica, if you ask me.)

source:

PHT covered the finer details of this odd marriage yesterday, but let’s look at a few of the results of this strange offering. Dust off your Napster jokes if you still have them …

1. Wonder if the Vancouver Canucks feel jilted?

2. Perhaps it was too on the nose for Metallica to link up with the Tampa Bay Lightning?

3. Does Dan Boyle feel left out or would he have just trashed the combination because the band cut its hair about a million years ago?

… So many questions.

Moving on …

Toronto seems to be the one place Eric Staal would consider accepting a trade to, depending upon the rumors you may believe. The question is: why? (Sportsnet)

Check out what this “Hulk-like” hockey parent did. (Deadspin)

GM Steve Yzerman assesses the Lightning at the All-Star break. (Tampa Tribune)

How various Washington Capitals approach contract years. (Washington Post)

Blues won’t extend Tarasenko ’til after season

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St. Louis tried to get started on a new contract for Vladimir Tarasenko earlier this season, but is now resigned to the fact it’ll have to wait until the year is over.

That’s per Sportsnet, who on Wednesday reported that Blues GM Doug Armstrong said there’ll be no Tarasenko extension until after the season. What’s more, Sportsnet also reported the Blues are unlikely to give the pending RFA a “bridge deal” — a shorter-term contract (often two-year) that would bring him to unrestricted free agency.

So, time to start speculating!

The 22-year-old Russian is in the midst of a breakout campaign, having already eclipsed his career-high in goals (24 thus far) while emerging as a point-a-game scorer. He’s also heading to his first All-Star Game in Columbus this weekend.

The 16th overall pick at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, it’s conceivable Tarasenko could get a contract similar to what fellow draft mates Taylor Hall got from Edmonton (seven years, $42 million) or Jeff Skinner got from Carolina (six years, $34.35 million). The rub there, of course, is that both those deals were signed shortly before the old collective bargaining agreement expired; under the new CBA, we’ve seen more bridge deals given to RFAs, including a contentious one hammered out between Columbus and the fourth overall pick in Tarasenko’s draft year — Ryan Johansen.

It’s also worth noting that St. Louis doesn’t have a ton of money being freed up at the end of the season. Barret Jackman and his $3.25M cap hit are done, but the Blues have to also re-up with another key RFA: Jake Allen, the club’s goalie of the future.