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2020 NHL All-Star Skills: Winners, fun moments, Hertl as Bieber

All-Star Skills competitions bring about memorable moments in plenty of years. Yet, when Tomas Hertl donned a Justin Bieber mask, fans received something truly unusual: nightmare fuel.

Luckily, that (honestly chilling) vision was just one memorable image from the 2020 NHL All-Star Skills competition. Let’s go over the events, winners, and other fun stuff.

Keeping the St. Louis (and surrounding areas) faithful happy

(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Ryan O'Reilly rocked a Chiefs helmet during warm-ups, while Jordan Binnington also supported the Super Bowl-bound team. The Chiefs did the Blues a solid during their Stanley Cup run, so why not pay it forward? Most importantly: it looked funny.

Matthew Tkachuk also went for a cheap pop from the St. Louis crowd by taking off his jersey to reveal St. Louis Cardinals garb during the Shooting Stars competition.

The greatest fan service came during appearances by big names of old. Wayne Gretzky — announced, accurately if amusingly, as a former Blue — really kicked things off. Brett Hull took a shot during the Shooting Stars event, and Keith Tkachuk also joined in alongside Matthew and Brady Tkachuk.

Personally, though, the best moment of all of those cameos came when Al MacInnis showed that he could still provide one of the hardest shots of any human.

Dude is 56. Allegedly.

Shea Weber ended up reclaiming his Hardest Shot title, while Patrick Kane won Shooting Stars.

Hertl wears the Bieber mask, creates nightmare fuel

As great as Hertl was at playing off of Jordan Binnington’s feud/friendly wager with Jordan Binnington (the Blues can fill you in on that), the actual execution of the mask makes me think of Michael Myers. You know, the creepy-masked slasher movie villain guilty of untold fictional executions in the “Halloween” series.

It’s still funny stuff, so enjoy the video above. Just maybe don’t let those images of Hertl as Bieber sink into your soul.

*Shudders*

Hertl explained after the Skills competition that the mask slipped, which made it difficult for him to put a decent shot on Binnington. That slip might also explain why it made it look like Bieber was the face for the rebooted “Shape,” which would make Bieber the next William Shatner.

Anyway, Binnington made that save, and also made the St. Louis crowd happy by winning save relay with 10 saves.

Binnington also got to chirp “Biebs,” saying he expected more. Nicely done.

Who won 2020 NHL All-Star Skills events, including Elite Women’s 3-on-3

So, the strangeness was mostly contained in those moments above. Granted, the Shooting Stars seems like it needs some fine-tuning, and I personally prefer styrofoam or otherwise breakable targets to the digital ones in this year’s accuracy competition.

But beyond those quibbles, the rest of the action was straightforward enough that we can breeze through the winners in one convenient spot.

Winners of Elite 3-on-3 Women’s Hockey: Canada 2-1

Hardest Shot: Shea Weber (106.5 mph)

Fastest Skater: Mathew Barzal (13.175 seconds) upset Connor McDavid (13.215)

Accuracy Shooting: Jaccob Slavin (9.505 seconds)

Save Streak: Jordan Binnington (10 saves)

Shooting Stars: Patrick Kane (22, then 2 in tiebreaker)

Itching for more All-Star Skills fun? Check out the 2019 edition.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Like Gronk before him, Patriots’ Edelman spikes puck at Bruins game

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Fresh off the New England Patriots’ millionth (OK, sixth) Super Bowl win, MVP Julian Edelman dropped the ceremonial puck for the Boston Bruins’ game against the New York Islanders on Tuesday.

Scratch that, he didn’t drop the puck — he spiked it.

Enjoy the video in the clip above the headline, and ponder a few things:

  • Edelman’s rocking an interesting look.

On one hand, the wide receiver rocks a very, very, credible playoff beard. One can only speculate about how much chicken has been lost in it.

On the other hand, a question: does Edelman usually wear sunglasses indoors, or is this a way of obscuring all of the, erm, celebrating over the last couple days? Some pressing questions there.

  • Is Tom Brady too cool to spike a puck?

Remarkably, this actually isn’t the first time a Patriots player celebrated a Super Bowl win by spiking a puck. Professional wrestler/superhuman tight end Rob Gronkowski did it back in 2015, and spiked it into the stands:

  • That Edelman spike video is worth watching just to bask in Patriots owner Robert Kraft’s blinged-out necklace. Just a lot to take in there.
  • As much as this was a celebration of the Patriots’ unending dynasty, it only seems fitting that seemingly ageless Bruins star Patrice Bergeron reached his 1,000th regular-season game in this one.

Boston sports fans: more than a little spoiled.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Three budget scenarios laid out for Glendale: None include old Coyotes arena payment plan

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Glendale’s interim City Manager Horatio Skeete has prepared three scenarios involving the Phoenix Coyotes, based on a report by the Arizona Republic.

All three scenarios suggest the city is in dire financial straits.

The projected best case scenario, from a budget perspective, is that a sales-tax hike goes forward and Glendale restructures its arena payment plan.

Under the current proposal, Glendale would pay prospective Greg Jamison buyer $94 million over the initial five years of a $300 million, 20-year plan, but Skeete wants that reduced to $72 million.

The next scenario is that the voters reject the sales-tax hike, but the city still gets its restructured arena payment plan, and the third is that the Phoenix Coyotes leave. What’s obviously missing is a scenario where the city goes with the original $300 million plan and the Coyotes stay in Glendale.

It’s also worth noting that all three of these scenarios are projected to result in the city taking a financial hit annually over the next five years. Even if the sales-tax stays in place and the arena payment plan is restructured, Glendale would need to reduce expenses by $3 million this year and $6 million each of the following four years.

Jamison needs to secure a lease before he can buy the team. At this point, the Globe and Mail suggests that the odds of Jamison completing his purchase are “bleak.”

That all being said, when Shane Doan recently re-signed with the Coyotes, he said he was confident about the team’s future in Arizona.