Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Young Stars and Super Skills Competition Do Their Job: Entertain

It was an exciting preliminary night to be followed by the main event tomorrow, the NHL All-Star game. The young stars put on a show of their skills and how the game would look should it start to resemble the NBA (The No Defense League).
Capitals defenseman Mike Green was able to play in the exhibition despite still recovering from an ankle injury he suffered last week. He recorded two assists and had a breakaway opportunity that was denied by Colorado's Peter Budaj.
Alex Ovechkin participated in the second half of the events for the night, the Super Skills competition. He was a contestant in the fastest skater competition which seemed to be suffering from technical difficulties. The electronic timer was not functioning correctly so the time was being recorded on the ice via a stopwatch. It was not exactly the most efficient way of conducting this event. Ovechkin seemed to be flying around the ice, but when he finished he was announced as having a time above 15 seconds, which was a full second behind the leader at the time Patrick Marleau. The commentators even suggested that the time-keeper obviously was no Capitals fan. Later on, Ovechkin continued his struggles in shootout situations as he missed his only attempt of the night.
Did anyone else have trouble following the ending to the Super Skills competition? How did Sidney Crosby get to take 4 shootout opportunities in a row? Maybe I was just tired, but it was very confusing.
Overall though it was an outstandingly entertaining night, which will hopefully lead to a memorable All-Star game tomorrow night.

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