The NHL all but announced they will not be participating in the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang. This news following the Board of Governors meeting conducted as part of All-Star Weekend. While hockey fans around the world widely regard this news as terrible, there is a miniscule silver lining. It is expected that the NHL will hold an All-Star Game in 2018 in lieu of meaningful hockey. Whether or not any NHL stars show up at the All-Star Game instead of politely excuse themselves with an injury or participate in the Olympics against the wishes of the NHL is still uncertain.
What is certain is the NHL has no plan in place for the 2018 All-Star Game. The All-Star Game now is likely less than a year away. Meanwhile the NHL has made no announcement whatsoever about its potential location. This list was made to help make sure that the All-Star Game is awarded to a well deserving city. Here are the three best choices:
Buffalo, New York: The Sabres have not hosted an All Star Game since 1978. Since then, they have changed their jerseys 15 times. Also, Buffalo has hosted World Juniors, the Scouting Combine, and the NHL Draft. They have drawn large crowds for any hockey related event that might have anything remotely to do with Eichel or McDavid. The Sabres would guarantee a sell out. What Buffalo lacks in local star power, is negated by its proximity to Toronto (the center of the hockey universe). The Sabres will have a fun, but probably not good team next year. An All-Star Game would be a nice reward for one of the most dependable US fan bases that has been saddled with a team that has struggled mightily over the past few years.
Detroit, Michigan: Detroit has been one of the model NHL franchises over the past 25 years both on and off the ice. That said, the Red Wings likely will certainly miss the playoffs this season and probably next season as well. Luckily for the fans of the winged wheel, The Red Wings will be celebrating the opening of the brand new Little Caesar’s Arena next season. The Red Wings have not hosted an All-Star Game since 1980. The rabid hockey market in Detroit is also guaranteed to sell out for an All-Star Game. What better way to celebrate the new building and reward one of the NHL’s best owners and fan bases during a rare off year than to host an NHL All Star Game?
Las Vegas, Nevada: Did you know the NHL has just expanded to 31 teams and has a new team called the Golden Knights? The NHL suspects you might not. An All-Star game is the ideal way to bring even more hype to the brand new team. Las Vegas is home to many less than famous celebrities and is a short drive from L.A. Filling out the very popular celebrity team should be a relatively easy task. Assuming the team survives their first 4 months, Vegas is the clear cut first choice.