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Pens Points: All Star Gimmicks Over, Now Back to Real Hockey

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Good morning one and all,

The NHL All Star weekend is behind us and now we get to move on with the rest of the season. It was a fun weekend in Columbus, and the hosts got excellent marks from the participants. [LA Times]

As for the main event, it was tough on the ears (all those cannon blasts), tough on the eyes (those horrid jerseys), and tough on goaltenders. [O Canada]

Ryan Johansen's star continues to rise as he was selected as the MVP of the game among many worthy participants (Voracek or, for my money, John Tavares). [Sportsnet]

I hope Marc-Andre Fleury had at least some fun, because other than that the whole thing was a monumental waste of his time. [PPG]

There were several heartwarming things to witness at the All Star game. The best one for me was the story of Nick Foligno and how his little girl overcame very tough odds to make it to her first birthday. Keep those tissues handy.[ESPN]

Another thing that made me happy was seeing the engaged and happy face of Chris Sutter, Darryl Sutter's son, on the bench of team Foligno. [LA Times]

And lastly, there was a reason Alex Ovechkin wanted that Honda so badly. He did get one in the end, and he had it earmarked for a special purpose. [Sportsnet]

If you want to see the best All Star move from this past weekend, you'll have to go back to Sochi, where Yugra's star (and Tampa's prospect) Nikita Gusev took part at the KHL All Star weekend festivities at Bolshoi Ice Dome. Unreal. [YouTube]

There was also the AHL All Star thing. Tom Kostopoulos and Derrick Pouliot particpated in the skills competition, and Bill Guerin served as the honorary captain for the Eastern Conference. [Citizen Voice]

A couple of things were announced during the All Star weekend. For one, World Cup of Hockey is set to return in 2016. Whatever. [NHL.com]

For the most part, I'm certain that people from top 6 hockey countries will love it, being as they actually get to have their team there. Here is one piece in support of it. [Arctic Ice Hockey]

NHL and NHLPA partnered with GoPro to deliver some unique views through player-worn on-ice cameras. Pretty snazzy stuff here. [YouTube]

In a more important development, the NHL, in conjunction with Sportvision, rolled out technology that will track puck possession, zone time and many other data. Corsi is dead, long live the new Corsi. [The Hockey News]

Now that we've recapped all the cool things from this past weekend, it's time to get back to thinking about Pens hockey. Pens Nation has done a comprehensive review of the first half of the season, so get reading:

  • Part I: Comprehensive first-half breakdown
  • Part II: Fancy stats and goal analysis in the first half
  • For the end here is another article I recommend. I don't always agree with this columnist, but when I do, I agree 100%. Sidney Crosby carried this sport, this league and this franchise on his back for a decade. Everything they asked for, the guy did it. Now that everybody's thriving and the coffers are full and there are stars galore, maybe he can just enjoy life a little. [Trib - Rossi]

    If you're getting snowed on, stay warm and have fun!