The weekend before the Super Bowl is seemingly irrelevant in the sports world. However, the NHL and NFL, along with their respective networks, have made use for the gap in playoff football by holding their all-star games the Sunday before the big game.
The closest the Patriots got to Oahu this year was Doug Flutie being on NBC's broadcast team, with all of the Pats landing in Indy early Sunday, including the 8 Pro-Bowl selections on the roster. This makes the all-star festivities in Hawaii irrelevant to our blog. The despicable play and ineptitude by the NFL to create an exciting display of their talent outside of meaningful games makes it irrelevant to every blog.
The NHL All-Star Weekend on the other hand, was heavily embedded by the Bruins. While the game displays little to no defense as you would expect, the changes the league has made since the 2005 lockout have made it an extremely entertaining weekend.
The second Fantasy Draft was held last Thursday, with B's captain Zdeno Chara selected as a captain/GM of one of the teams. He chose Boston goalie Tim Thomas with the 3rd overall selection, and although he made him sweat, chose Tyler Seguin with one of the last picks. Chara also added fuel to the fire that is the Boston-Vancouver rivalry by refusing to select any of the three Canucks in the draft pool. He would probably give you the politically correct answer if you asked him, and state that he was picking the best team he could and not worrying about what team they were from. However, with all defensemen needing to be taken by round 15 however, Chara chose a four D-men in 6 rounds before the cutoff, forcing Team Alfredsson to take Canuck Alex Edler.
In the skills competition, Chara took his slapshot to new heights, shattering all perceived human possibilities and winning the hardest shot competition, which included a world record 108.8 mph bomb in the first round.
The weekend came to a close with the aforementioned game, which his team won 12-9. Tim Thomas set a league record as the only goaltender to win 4 consecutive all-star games as he stopped 18/21 shots on goal in the third period to clinch the victory. Tyler Seguin added a nifty assist in 15 minutes of ice time, and Chara scored a goal to help the cause as well.
A great showcase by the Boston Bruins in a great celebration of the game of hockey leads us into what should be a great second half of the year, and most importantly, Super Bowl week. Tune in to Rhode To Boston Radio tomorrow night as the team previews Pats-Giants.