56th NHL All-Star Game
1 2 3 OT Total
West 1 2 4 {{{visitor_OT}}} 7
East 5 0 3 {{{home_OT}}} 8
Date January 27, 2008
Arena Philips Arena
City Atlanta, Georgia
MVP Eric Staal (Carolina)
Attendance 18,644

The 56th National Hockey League All-Star Game was held on January 27, 2008 at the Philips Arena in Atlanta, Georgia, home of the Atlanta Thrashers, during the 2007–08 NHL season.

Atlanta had originally been scheduled to host what would have been the 55th NHL All-Star Game in 2005, however that game was canceled due to the NHL Lockout of 2004–05.

Players in this game, like the 55th National Hockey League All-Star Game, wore Rbk EDGE jerseys. The jersey logos have been redesigned, showing a simple logo that displays East and West on the respective conference jerseys, captain and alternate captain patches on the right side (instead of left), and the player's number below the logo.

Diversity honored[edit | edit source]

As Atlanta is a place of significance to the American civil rights movement (among the hockey-related achievements is John Paris Jr. becoming the first black to coach a pro hockey team, the Atlanta Knights of the International Hockey League), and 2008 is the 50th anniversary of Willie O'Ree breaking hockey's color barrier with the Boston Bruins, the NHL chose the All-Star weekend to honour the diversity of the league.

Game program cover

Changes in the All-Star program[edit | edit source]

Philips Arena before the NHL Skills competition began

The previous year's YoungStars game and skills competition, which lead up to the main game, were criticized for the lack of excitement: the YoungStars game saw a lack of effort by the players overall, while the shootout portion of the skills competition was criticized for being too boring - in the previous year, at three different points in the skills competition, each goaltender would take on four opposing players in regular penalty shots - which in itself is not too different from what was seen in regular-season play.

For this year, to raise interest in all-star festivities, no YoungStars goaltenders were named - instead, the YoungStars played in a three-on-three game (of two running six-minute periods) halfway through the skills competition, with the regular all-star goaltenders in net. There was only one faceoff at the start of each half - if the puck goes out of play, another puck was thrown onto the ice. If a goal was scored, the three players retreated to their own side of centre ice before being able to attack again. For either side to win the YoungStars game, the team must score greater goals in both halves. Brandon Dubinsky of the New York Rangers was named the Youngstars MVP for scoring 2 goals and an assist.

Furthermore, the skills competition itself was changed dramatically - the Fastest Skater competition is now a sprint instead of a lap around the arena (a final showdown portion has also been added), while the traditional Puck Control Relay was changed to the Obstacle Course event, where stick handling, saucer passes, one-timers, and goaltenders attempting to score by shooting pucks the length of the ice into an empty net (itself a former All-Star Skills event called Goalie Goals) is featured. Both changes were made to further reflect game conditions. The traditional Shooting Accuracy remains, though a final showdown stage (consisting of having to shoot four targets in nine seconds with only four pucks, and if still tied, one shot in three seconds at one target) is held to determine an individual winner. Hardest Shot is the only event unchanged from previous years.

But by far the greatest change is in the shootout portion: two events are based on the shootout: in the Elimination Shootout, skaters shoot against the all-star goaltenders, with a skater being eliminated if they fail to score. The second shootout-based event, the Breakaway Challenge, incorporates elements from the National Basketball Association's All-Star Slam Dunk Contest: three players from each team (as selected by the all-star team captains) will be judged on their style and creativity by a panel of four judges as they attempt to score on the all-star goaltenders. The judges may award up to nine points, and a bonus point is added should the skater score. The judging panel this year consists of Dominique Wilkins, a former two-time Slam Dunk Champion with the Atlanta Hawks, former Thrashers captain Scott Mellanby, Canadian actor Taylor Kitsch, and broadcaster Bill Clement. The two skaters (one from each team) with the highest scores face off in a final showdown to determine the winner of the event.

Rosters[edit | edit source]

Eastern Conference Western Conference
Coach: Flag of Canada John Paddock
(Ottawa Senators)
Flag of Canada Mike Babcock
(Detroit Red Wings)
Assistant Coach: Flag of the United States Don Waddell
(Atlanta Thrashers)
Flag of the United States Ron Wilson
(San Jose Sharks)

Flag of the United States 39 – G Rick DiPietro (New York Islanders)1
Flag of Slovakia 33 – D Zdeno Chara (Boston Bruins)
Flag of Russia 79 – D Andrei Markov (Montreal Canadiens)
Flag of Canada 4 – F Vincent Lecavalier (Tampa Bay Lightning) - (C)
Flag of Sweden 11 – F Daniel Alfredsson (Ottawa Senators)3
Flag of Russia 17 – F Ilya Kovalchuk (Atlanta Thrashers)4

Flag of Canada 30 – G Chris Osgood (Detroit Red Wings)2
Flag of Canada 3 – D Dion Phaneuf (Calgary Flames)
Flag of Sweden 5 – D Nicklas Lidstrom (Detroit Red Wings)
Flag of Canada 12 – F Jarome Iginla (Calgary Flames) - (C)
Flag of Russia 13 – F Pavel Datsyuk (Detroit Red Wings)
Flag of Canada 61 – F Rick Nash (Columbus Blue Jackets)5


Flag of the Czech Republic 29 – G Tomas Vokoun (Florida Panthers)
Flag of the United States 30 – G Tim Thomas (Boston Bruins)1
Flag of the Czech Republic 15 – D Tomas Kaberle (Toronto Maple Leafs)
Flag of Canada 51 – D Brian Campbell (Buffalo Sabres)
Flag of Finland 44 – D Kimmo Timonen (Philadelphia Flyers)
Flag of Russia 55 – D Sergei Gonchar (Pittsburgh Penguins)
Flag of Canada 12 – F Eric Staal (Carolina Hurricanes)
Flag of Canada 10 – F Mike Richards (Philadelphia Flyers)
Flag of the United States 19 – F Scott Gomez (New York Rangers)
Flag of Canada 9 – F Jason Spezza (Ottawa Senators)3
Flag of Canada 91 – F Marc Savard (Boston Bruins)7
Flag of Slovakia 18 – F Marian Hossa (Atlanta Thrashers)
Flag of Canada 26 – F Martin St. Louis (Tampa Bay Lightning)
Flag of Russia 8 – F Alexander Ovechkin (Washington Capitals)
Flag of Russia 71 – F Evgeni Malkin (Pittsburgh Penguins)4

Flag of Russia 20 – G Evgeni Nabokov (San Jose Sharks)
Flag of Canada 34 – G Manny Legace (St. Louis Blues)
Flag of Canada 2 – D Duncan Keith (Chicago Blackhawks)
Flag of Canada 25 – D Chris Pronger (Anaheim Ducks)
Flag of Canada 27 – D Scott Niedermayer (Anaheim Ducks)6
Flag of Canada 55 – D Ed Jovanovski (Phoenix Coyotes)
Flag of Canada 10 – F Shawn Horcoff (Edmonton Oilers)
Flag of Slovenia 11 – F Anze Kopitar (Los Angeles Kings)
Flag of Canada 15 – F Ryan Getzlaf (Anaheim Ducks)
Flag of Canada 19 – F Jason Arnott (Nashville Predators)
Flag of Canada 97 – F Joe Thornton (San Jose Sharks)
Flag of Sweden 33 – F Henrik Sedin (Vancouver Canucks)
Flag of Slovakia 9 – F Marian Gaborik (Minnesota Wild)
Flag of Canada 18 – F Corey Perry (Anaheim Ducks)8
Flag of Canada 63 – F Mike Ribeiro (Dallas Stars)5

Box Score[edit | edit source]

WEST 7 - 8
(1-5, 2-0, 4-3)
EAST Philips Arena (18,644)
Flag of the United States Atlanta, Georgia
First period
Nash 0:12 Referees:
1:20 Staal (Campbell, Malkin) Flag of Canada Rob Martell
9:43 Markov (Richards, Hossa) Flag of Canada Brad Watson
13:35 Ovechkin (Spezza, St. Louis)
15:10 Campbell (Malkin, Lecavalier) Linesmen:
17:49 Ovechkin (2) (St. Louis, Spezza) Flag of CanadaLyle Seitz
Second period Flag of the United StatesPat Dapuzzo
Nash (2) (Datsyuk) 9:34
Niedermayer (Thornton, Sedin) 15:08 MVP:
Third period Flag of Canada Eric Staal (Carolina)
Getzlaf (Jovanovski) 0:41
Nash (3) (Iginla) 1:56
4:08 Hossa (Gomez, Chara)
Phaneuf (Getzlaf, Arnott) 5:07
Gaborik (Sedin) 10:57
12:35 Staal (2) (Kovalchuk, Savard)
19:39 Savard (GWG) (Campbell, Staal)

W - Tim Thomas L - Manny Legace

Notes[edit | edit source]

Note 1: Martin Brodeur was named to the East All-Star Team as a starter, but did not play in favor of resting over the break. Tim Thomas was named as his replacement on the roster, while Rick DiPietro was named as his replacement on the starting lineup.
Note 2: Roberto Luongo was voted to the West all-star team as a starter, but did not play (personal). Chris Osgood was named as his replacement in the starting lineup (no roster replacement was named as the reserves had not been announced at the time).
Note 3: The top line of the Ottawa Senators (Alfredsson, Heatley, Spezza) was the first forward line to be named in their entirety to the All-Star Game since 1981, when the Los Angeles Kings had their top line named.
Note 4: Sidney Crosby was named to the East all-star team as a starter, but did not play due to injury. Evgeni Malkin was named as his roster replacement, while Ilya Kovalchuk was named as his replacement on the starting lineup.
Note 5: Henrik Zetterberg was named to the West All-Star Team as a starter, but did not play. Mike Ribeiro was named as his replacement, while Rick Nash was named as his replacement on the starting lineup.
Note 6: Sergei Zubov was named to the West All-Star Team, but did not play. Scott Niedermayer was named as his replacement.
Note 7: Dany Heatley was voted to the East all-star team, but was unable to play due to injury. Marc Savard was named as his replacement.
Note 8: Paul Stastny was named to the West All-Star Team, but was unable to play due to injury. Corey Perry was named as his replacement.

External links[edit | edit source]

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