For the first time since 2011, the NHL’s stars gathered in celebration of excellence, taking over Columbus’ Nationwide Arena for the 2015 NHL All-Star game. In a very offensive affair, Team Toews and Team Foligno combined for the highest goal total ever. Prepare yourselves… For the biggest
The Vancouver Canucks’ only representative, Radim Vrbata, opened the scoring on a (you guessed it) breakaway goal, after Team Toews dominated the first 3 minutes of play.
Although team Foligno head coach Darryl Sutter would have been content with the 1-2-2 ‘trap’ to conserve the lead, Ryan Getzlaf tied it up shortly after, with Carey Price fresh off an in-game interview with the broadcasters from CBC, whilst taking fire from Jonathan Toews’ line.
The Captain himself would get on the board as his team took the lead, after feeding a pass to league-leading point getter Jakub Voracek, giving the away team the lead.
Ryan Johansen scored one to tie it up for the hometown crowd, and to no surprise got the biggest ovation of the night thus far.
Goals from Patrice Bergeron, Kevin Shattenkirk, John Tavares, and Johansen’s second, tied the game at 4, as the first period came to a close. Carey Price and Roberto Luongo finished their respective All-Star Weekends with 12 and 13 saves each.
Corey Crawford entered Team Toews’ net with Marc-Andre Fleury at the other end, and both did not make a save on the first four shots of the period. By the 2:30 mark, the 4-4 tie had turned into a 6-6 deadlock, with goals from Steven Stamkos, Tyler Seguin, Ryan Suter, and Claude Giroux, with both Duncan Keith and Patrick Kane notching assists in the flurry of goals.
Team Toews proceeded to take off shortly after, with Rick Nash, Filip Forsberg, Tavares, and Voracek opening the game wide open by the half-way point.
While Marc-Andre Fleury was counting down the minutes until he could return to the bench, Corey Crawford made one of the best saves of the weekend with a double-pad stack on Radim Vrbata. Minutes later, he followed it up with a smooth glove save on Johansen’s hat-trick attempt.
Nick Foligno and Stamkos cut Team Toews’ lead in half with a pair of beautiful goals, but Tavares would net his hat-trick and restore a three-goal lead for the away team as the second period came to a close.
Corey Crawford finished his first All-Star Game with 14 saves on 18 shots, while Marc-Andre Fleury went 9-for-16 at the other end. Team Toews set an All-Star Game record with 7 goals in a period, while the 11 total goals in the second period also set a record.
Bryan Elliott and Jaroslav Halak entered the game for the third period, as both teams eyed a chance to break a long-standing All-Star Game record.
Patrick Kane netted two beautiful goals to finish Columbus’ goal-cannon’s night, but the goals would keep coming. John Tavares’ fourth, Jakub Voracek’s third, Tyler Seguin and Rick Nash’s second, and a first from Bobby Ryan officially tied the scoring record, with 26 goals in the entire game.
The record would be broken, and it would be none other than Jonathan Toews, netting the 16th goal for his team, and the 27th overall, passing the 2001 game in Denver for the most all-time.
Filip Forsberg and Brent Burns finished the scoring with two more goals, and Team Toews ended the 2015 NHL All-Star Weekend with a 17-12 win over Team Foligno in the All-Star Game.
The goalies of the second period would have the best and worst nights respectively, with Crawford making a game-high 14 saves, while Marc-Andre Fleury was at the receiving end of the most offensive period in All-Star Game history.
The five Blackhawks would combine for three goals, seven assists, and 10 points. Patrick Kane led the way with a pair of goals, while Jonathan Toews recorded four assists. Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith were +3 and +1 respectively.
The only three players to fail to record a point were Anze Kopitar, Zemgus Girgensons, and Phil Kessel, who went -4.
John Tavares became the sixth player to record a four-goal game in the All-Star game, and spent the final 90 seconds of the game with Vladimir Tarasenko and Tyler Seguin trying to find his fifth goal, a would-be record.
Ryan Johansen walked away with the Game’s MVP award, with two goals and an assist for his own Columbus fans.
Next year’s All-Star game will take place in Nashville. Until then, the stretch playoff run begins, and we will see a new Stanley Cup Champion. With one of the most radical All-Star Weekends in the books, it’s exciting to see what will be brought to the table in the next 52 weeks.
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