Plain and simple, the Skills Competition is the best part of All-Star Weekend. It allows players to show off their stuff and gives them a little bit of personality to the viewing public. It was started in 1990 for players to show of and settle some arguments that people could have…if they even cared.
However, the biggest issue that not all of the players with the hardest shot, top speed, or most accuracy are at the All-Star Weekend. That was definitely known when Mat Barzal didn’t have a chance to try and beat Connor McDavid for the fastest skater title. Plus, I’m sure that there’s someone in the league that has a harder shot than Alex Ovechkin. Some teams have annual skills competitions in-house for the fans, so why not take the top players from there for the skills competition.
Or just revitalize a show from the late 1970s and early 1980s on the CBC. It was something put together by the NHLPA and the CBC and played during the intermission of Hockey Night in Canada. As Joe Pelletier mentioned in his post about it, the NHL tried to block the players from doing it because of the risk of injury. I’m sure something like that would happen now, so it’s a far-fetched thing to think about.
Yet, think about it. You want to have new TV ideas for hockey– this would be perfect. It’d show off the game’s most skilled players, they’d be able to profile some players who may not get the national attention as others, and it would be a nice change of pace from what They have now. You could also include some younger players in the AHL or CHL to display their skill or what-have-you. Hell, get some retired players– why not??
Plus, you could make this into a tournament event with the final four or five going onto the big show at the All-Star Weekend. There’s plenty of incentive for it, as much as some owners or GMs may not like it; it’s something to showcase the players in light-hearted competition and show off the skill of their game. Everyone wins, when you look at it from a broader scale.