RALEIGH, N.C. _ In the grand scheme of things, the NHL All-Star Game's MVP award doesn't mean much.
Still, for the integrity of the game, the way the winner is picked needs to be changed.
Chicago's Patrick Sharp, a former Flyer, had a goal and two assists for the losing team on Sunday and was named the game's MVP.
By my count, he was the EIGHTH-best choice.
Twelve writers were given a vote; fans were also given a vote, which went to the player whose name they texted the most.
The problem is, the writers were asked to submit their votes with 10 minutes left in the game.
A lot happened in the last 10 minutes of Team Lidstrom's 11-10 win over Team Staal, but voters weren't allowed to change their ballots. (There were five goals scored in the last 10 minutes, and Team Lidstrom took control of the game.)
In this day of Tweeting and texting instantly, why does the NHL need to have the results so early?
The MVP voters should be able to submit votes with, say, 30 seconds left because it should take about 10 seconds to tabulate the results.
Here is how I think the MVP vote should have gone:
1. D Shea Weber: He had four assists and was plus-6 for the winners.
2. F Loui Eriksson: He had two goals (including an empty-netter that proved to be the game-winner) and two assists for the winners.
3. F Danny Briere: He had two goals, and his second one tied the game at 8-8 midway through the final period, sparking the comeback victory.
4. F Jonathan Toews: He had a goal and two assits, and his goal gave Team Lidstrom the lead for good at 9-8.
5. D Nicklas Lidstrom: He was plus-7 for the winners.
6. F Anze Kopitar: He had two goals in a winning cause.
7. D Kris Letang: He had two goals, including a third-period tally that gave Team Staal a brief 8-7 lead.
8. F Patrick Sharp: He had a terrific game (one goal, two assits) and had great chemistry with Claude Giroux (goal, assist), but he was not deserving of the MVP award and the car that went with it.
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Breakaways. Reggie Leach was the last player to win the All-Star Game MVP award for the Flyers. He won it in 1980.....Briere won the award in 2007 while he was with Buffalo.....Giroux on his loss to a team that had his housemate, Briere, on it: “I won the skills competition, so I think we’re even.”….Peter Luukko, president of the Flyers' parent company, Comcast-Spectacor, said he had no progress to report on having a future All-Star Game or an NHL draft in Philadelphia.....Based on their contracts with their respective clubs, the all-star teams' payrolls were almost identical _ $102.2 million for Team Staal, and $102.7 million for Team Lidstrom.....The average height and weight for the all-stars: 6-foot-1, 202.5 pounds, and the average age was 27.....The Flyers were among seven teams that had all-stars on different sides.
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