NHL drops major announcement regarding next month's All-Star Game

Dean Chaudhry
January 4, 2024  (9:40)

The 2024 All-Star Game is slated to happen next month
Photo credit: Ticketmaster

After what might have been one of the worst All-Star weekends in recent memory last season, the NHL was quick to announce that the festivities would be headed back to Toronto for the first time since 2000 this season.

The North America vs the World matchups were intense and made for some must-see-TV. When they shifted back to the traditional Eastern Conference vs the Western Conference matchup, the event still drew a lot of fandom. However with the new format that focuses on all 4 divisions with a roster of just 12 players where each team has to be represented, we're left with gimmicky hockey and a lot of unnecessary snubs.
NHL insider Chris Johnston tweeted out on Wednesday that the first batch of All-Stars will be revealed on Thursday. The first batch will encompass one player from all 32 clubs and then the fans will vote in 12 additional players via the fan vote.
With this format we're going to be left with a lot of difficult decisions especially for teams who carry 3+ All-Star worthy players like the Toronto Maple Leafs. You'll also have teams like Vancouver, who have 4 players in the top-22 in scoring, have almost the same representation as a team like San Jose and Montreal, who don't carry a single point-per-game player and no real bona-fide All-Star caliber players.
William Nylander is having an outstanding season where he sits 4th in the league with 51 points and 8th in assists with 32. Then you have Auston Matthews leading the league with 30 goals and tied for 10th in points with 45. Who gets the nod and who gets snubbed? According to captain John Tavares "it's pretty obvious" that it should be Nylander.
"I think it's pretty obvious — there's not much of a debate," his linemate John Tavares concurred in conversation with The Athletic after an impactful all-around outing for Nylander in Los Angeles. "Top five in league scoring. Maybe been the most consistent player (in the NHL) all year. Obviously (Nikita) Kucherov's probably been up there, (Nathan) MacKinnon's been hot, but maybe no more consistent player (than him). He continues to get better and deserves that recognition," Tavares said of Nylander deserving the All-Star nod.
Both players will most likely make the team - one being the representative and the other being voted in - but it should be the best the division has to offer rather than trying to appease the rebuilding and tanking franchises with representation.
Johnny Gaudreau leads the Columbus Blue Jackets with 25 points, Frank Vatrano leads the Anaheim Ducks with 26 points, and Tomas Hertl leads the San Jose Sharks with 28. Someone who is much more deserving of a spot will get snubbed and the NHL will be blowing another opportunity to bringing their game to new heights by pandering to the struggling and rebuilding franchises instead of allowing the event to feature the best players.
NHL drops major announcement regarding next month's All-Star Game

Should all 32 teams have a representative at the All-Star Game?

No, send the best players33544.8 %
Yes, the league needs to market all 32 teams28438 %
The All-Star Game sucks in general12917.2 %
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