The 2012 NHL All-Star weekend in Ottawa was definitely a success in my book.
Some may disagree with me here, but I really like the concept of two captains conducting a fantasy draft. It really looks like the players have fun participating in it. The captains of the two teams were chosen well. Daniel Alfredsson and Zdeno Chara each led their teams.
Chara obviously won the Stanley Cup last season, and Alfredsson's city was the host of the All-Star events.
Alfredsson, who spent his entire great career with the Senators so far and has registered over 1,000 points, donned the role of captain in a great manner. He was able to keep his fellow Senators and natives of Sweden together, which was pretty cool.
After making his teammate sweat it out, Chara gave Alfredsson a hug after he picked him later in the draft.
Logan Couture, a bright star from the San Jose Sharks, was the last overall pick, but got to take home a sleek car.
The Super Skills Competition was a success as well. Carl Hagelin, a rookie from the New York Rangers, was the fastest skater there.
Many players showcased their skills and unique minds in the NHL Breakaway Challenge. Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks took out a small hockey stick and used it. The New York Islanders' John Tavares scored a goal lacrosse style.
But the best contestant of the Breakaway Challenge was Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks.
For his second and third shots, he donned a Superman cape. In his second attempt, he took a dive, pushed the puck with his glove hand over to his stick hand and slid it by Brian Elliot, the rejuvenated St. Louis Blues goaltender. And for his third shot, Kane used an exploding puck that blew up when he shot it, showing off the strength of his Superman outfit.
The NHL's current leading goal-scorer, Steven Stamkos, won the Elimination Shootout. He was able to outlast Tavares and Jason Pominville of the Buffalo Sabres. Players were flying and showing off their magical hands. The final score saw Team Chara defeat Team Alfredsson 12-9 with a late flurry of goals by Team Chara.
Some of the highlights included Alfredsson putting on a show for his home crowd by scoring two goals. He nearly had the hat trick, but missed it by a post and a great save by the Boston Bruins' Tim Thomas.
Marian Gaborik of the New York Rangers, won the MVP award. He scored a hat trick, including two goals off fellow Ranger Henrik Lundqvist. Gaborik then went on to playfully taunt his teammate.
Evgeni Malkin of the Penguins scored a nice goal off Lundqvist when he roofed a shot over the goalie's shoulder. Marian Hossa showed off his magical hands with a nifty goal and a couple of assists.
John Tavares scored a goal off a rebound, and later in the game set up Milan Michalek of the Senators with another nice play with the hands to get a pass to the front of the net.
Tim Thomas stole the show in the third period, only allowing two goals, and made some superhuman saves. One was a stick save that robbed Alfredsson of the hat trick.
The 2012 All-Star weekend was a huge success, and a very enjoyable experience to watch.