Believe it or not, Team Staal had a 4-0 lead in the first period of the 2011 NHL All-Star Game. Really, they did. Go check the box score.
Since the 10:50 mark of the first period, when Anze Kopitar got Team Lidstrom on the board with a breakaway goal, it’s been all about the team in blue. They scored four straight goals to even the score by the end of the first period, and that trend certainly continued into the second.
Just 1:18 into the period, MVP front-runner Patrick Sharp tried to hold off the Team Lidstrom tide, scoring on a wrister to give Team Staal the lead once again. Kris Letang beat Lidstrom netminder Jonas Hiller to re-open the two goal lead a few seconds later, but that would be short lived.
In a matter of five minutes, Team Lidstrom scored three goals to take their first lead of the contest. Anze Kopitar’s second of the game cut the lead to 6-5 before Steven Stamkos evened the score. A minute later, Danny Briere came down the left wing and beat Carey Price with a beautiful shot from a tough angle, and with that, Team Lidstrom has the 7-6 lead heading into the third period.
Montreal’s Price replaced Carolina’s Cam Ward in the Team Staal net for the second period, while Hiller relieved Marc-Andre Fleury in the Team Lidstrom net. Henrik Lundqvist will jump in for Team Staal in the third, while Tim Thomas will be mic’d up and in goal for Team Lidstrom.
There’s still nothing that resembles defense in this game, and there’s actually only been one real whistle – for offsides in the second period – outside of a goal or a save by a goalie. The fans hilariously booed that call.
The Hurricanes’ players have been pretty quiet so far tonight, despite the fact that just about everybody on Team Staal’s been trying to get Jeff Skinner a goal. I think they want the roof to collapse or something, because if Skinner scores, that’s what’s going to happen. The place will go insane.
It’s been an entertaining game so far, and really, since we know the hockey isn’t of the best quality in these games, all we can ask for is a close, entertaining game, right?
This update was written by Travis Hughes, SB Nation’s NHL editor.