OTTAWA -- Statistics say that approximately 4 percent of the world’s population was born with natural, red hair.
Scott Hartnell, the Flyers’ resident ginger, just happened to be on a line with two others - in Vancouver twins Daniel and Henrik Sedin - in his first NHL All-Star Game on Sunday afternoon in Ottawa.
That was how the game started.
Hartnell’s regular linemate, Claude Giroux, nearly played a role in extending it. Giroux, who summers in Canada’s capital city, knotted the game at 8-8 for Team Alfredsson with 10:20 to play in the third period.
Fittingly, Zdeno Chara won it for Team Chara, 12-9, with a blast less than 3 minutes later. The Rangers' Marian Gaborik was named the All-Star Game’s MVP with 3 goals and an assist.
Daniel Alfredsson, who brought to crowd to his feet on multiple occasions in what appears to be his swan-song season after 17 years in Ottawa, wasn’t able to get the win for his team. All 5 of of the host Senators skated on Team Alfredsson.
All in all, the All-Star Game was an opportunity to let some of the game’s brightest personalities shine.
And Hartnell was a key focus.
For Hartnell, who spent most of the contest mic’d up on the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast, it was a constant playful experience. At varying points in the third period, Giroux was even trying to trip his teammate, Hartnell, to try and cost him a little more money.
Before the game, Hartnell pledged that he would donate $1,000 for each time he fell to the ice as part of his ongoing #HartnellDown campaign to raise money for charity. Hartnell, 29, joined up with a Flyers’ fan on Twitter (@SethDH) earlier in the season to since make his hashtag a consistently trending topic during Flyers games.
Hartnell’s agent, Dean Grillo, was in town to keep track of the spills himself.
Through the first two periods, Hartnell fell 4 times, racking up $4,000 for charity. One shift alone cost him 2 G’s.
"It was really awesome,” Hartnell said during the second intermission, in which musical guest Drake performed at Scotiabank Place. “It was a lot of fun and I [was] just trying to take it all in. I was able to set up one of the Sedins, I'm not sure which one it was, but it's fun trying to work hard and not look too funny out there.”
Hartnell actually picked up 2 assists in the contest.
"I just got a good pass back-door and I saw he was waiting for it, so I just laid it in there and I was able to get it in,” Hartnell said of his first one. “It was a little tic-tac-toe pass and we were able to do something with it.”
Giroux, skating with Steven Stamkos and Logan Couture, had 1 goal. Defenseman Kimmo Timonen was paired with Ryan Suter on Team Chara. He did not post a point but added 1 shot on goal in his 4th career All-Star Game appearance.
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