BOSTON (CBS) – With the unofficial first half of the NHL season behind them, three Bruins will head down to Raleigh, North Carolina for this weekend’s All-Star festivities.
Captain Zdeno Chara, goaltender Tim Thomas and rookie Tyler Seguin will represent the Black and Gold when the best of the best hit the ice starting Saturday night.
“I’m very excited, it’s always fun,” Chara said. “It’s always something different. Obviously it’s a huge honor and I’m very humble to be a part of it.”
This will be Chara’s fifth All-Star appearance. He will also defend his “Hardest Shot” crown in Saturday night’s SuperSkills competition. Chara has won the event the past three years, setting a record in last year’s competition with a 105.4 mph slap shot.
For goaltender Tim Thomas his third All-Star appearance is extra special. After a tough 2010 season, Thomas is back in Vezina form and feels his trip to Raleigh is more of an honor than previous years.
“To get back to an All-Star Game after all the adversity last year it’s special to me,” Thomas told reporters Wednesday. “I appreciate it very much. All these experiences, they were fairytales, far off fairytales for me until the past few years.”
Thomas did not start his last two All-Star appearances, but managed to pick up the win in each of them. This year, Thomas should start for either side that picks him.
The major difference this year is the fantasy draft that will decide the two teams. Captains for each side will pick teams on Friday.
“It’s going to be something different, I don’t know exactly what to expect,” Chara said. “It will bring the memories back when every one of us was drafted, it should be exciting.”
With a draft, one player will have to live with being the last player selected. That is not something that concerns Boston’s representatives.
Zdeno Chara and Tim Thomas Talk About Chances Of Being Picked Last In Fantasy Draft
“I don’t care,” Chara said. “Honestly, somebody’s going have to be last, somebody’s going to have to be first. I think it’s important that you made the All-Star game.”
“No fear of being picked last, because goalies have to be picked in the first 10-rounds,” Thomas joked. “The D has to be picked in the first 18, so we know it’s going to be a forward.”
Tyler Seguin is one of 12 rookies selected to participate in Saturday’s SuperSkills competition.