It’s NHL All-Star Weekend, when the most effective gamers in hockey congregate in a single location — this 12 months, it’s South Florida — to indicate off their abilities.

Well, a lot of the greatest gamers.

This 12 months, the preliminary 32 All-Stars had been chosen by the NHL hockey operations division, with every group given one consultant. Then, three extra gamers in every division (two skaters and one goalie) had been chosen by fan vote. Throw in a couple of damage replacements (additionally picked by the league) and also you’ve bought your All-Star groups.

But the choice course of wasn’t good. And that’s the place we are available in. It’s time to handle probably the most notable All-Star snubs of 2023.

To make clear, gamers who had been chosen or would have been chosen if not for damage don’t rely. We’re solely centered on the gamers who might have attended the weekend’s All-Star festivities, however had been ignored, whether or not by league determination (within the case of preliminary group consultant/damage alternative) or neglect within the fan vote. And then, simply to make issues enjoyable, the gamers who’re in Florida however ought to have been ignored in favor of our 5 snubs.

Vince Dunn — D — Seattle

Should be in for: Chandler Stephenson (Vegas)

The Seattle Kraken are one of many NHL’s greatest tales of the 12 months. In simply their second season of existence, they not solely are poised for a shock playoff berth, they’re presently main the complete Pacific Division.

So in fact, they don’t have a single All-Star consultant.

That appears truthful.

In the NHL’s protection, the Kraken did initially get their league-mandated one consultant in Calder Trophy favourite Matty Beniers. But when Beniers needed to drop out of the sport attributable to damage, he wasn’t changed with a teammate. Instead, Vegas’ Chandler Stephenson took his spot, leaving the Kraken with no single attendee.

This isn’t a slight in opposition to Stephenson. He’s having a advantageous 12 months for the Golden Knights, although he nearly definitely wouldn’t be main the group in scoring if teammate Mark Stone hadn’t simply underwent again surgical procedure. But Stephenson — with simply 11 objectives and beneath a point-per-game tempo (44 in 51 video games) — isn’t having a transcendent season that may justify shutting the Kraken out of the sport totally. And Vegas already had goalie Logan Thompson heading to South Florida. They didn’t want one other consultant.

So who can be the only option from Seattle as a substitute? Let’s go along with Dunn, who’s within the midst of a breakout season at age 26.

No, Dunn’s offensive numbers — 36 factors in 49 video games — aren’t eye-popping. But he does rank twelfth amongst NHL defensemen, so he’s no slouch from a scoring standpoint. His largest power, nonetheless, has are available in his capability to drive play for the Kraken on their high pair with Adam Larsson. His 54.16 p.c anticipated objectives share at five-on-five leads the Seattle blue line corps, and he ranks within the 88th percentile leaguewide in remoted xG impression (per Evolving-Hockey’s RAPM mannequin) amongst NHL defensemen as nicely.

Combine that with the truth that he’s getting almost 24 minutes per sport (23:58), and it helps to clarify why he ranks twelfth amongst all NHL place gamers in Evolving Hockey’s Goals Above Replacement metric and within the 99th percentile in Dom Luszczyszyn’s Game Score Value Added metric. Dunn has low-key been one of many higher defensemen — and gamers — in hockey, and one of many largest the reason why the Kraken lead the Pacific Division coming into the break.

Stephenson? He’s down in forty fifth by GAR and the 92nd percentile in GSVA.

Good? Yep. More deserving of a spot than Dunn? Nah.

Jesper Bratt — W — New Jersey

Should be in for: Artemi Panarin (Rangers)

This is only a case of title recognition outweighing precise on-ice play.

Artemi Panarin, in fact, is a bonafide NHL celebrity. He performs within the largest United States market, he has two 90-point seasons to his credit score, he’s been a Hart Trophy finalist, and he even has a novel and memorable nickname. Jesper Bratt is a sixth-round decide who performs for the third-most-popular group in mentioned market and has by no means as soon as gotten a single award vote for any trophy.

So it is sensible that Panarin would win the fan vote portion of the All-Star choice course of over Bratt. But there’s one nagging drawback.

Bratt is simply plain higher than Panarin.

Sure, their sport and level totals are equivalent — each have 50 factors in 49 contests. But in just about each different necessary statistical class, Bratt blows Panarin out of the water. Bratt has extra objectives (19 to 12). He’s a extra environment friendly level producer at five-on-five (2.54 Points/60 to 2.21). He’s a much better play-driver, boosting his group’s xG differential on common by +0.374 factors (97th percentile amongst NHL forwards) whereas Panarin deflates his by -0.065 (thirty third percentile). GSVA places Bratt within the 98th percentile when it comes to general worth added to his group; Panarin is down within the 87th. This isn’t a very shut competitors.

The 24-year previous Bratt ought to be a a lot greater title than he’s. This weekend’s All-Star Game might have been his leaguewide coming-out celebration. Instead, Panarin is there largely attributable to status and title recognition.

Sebastian Aho — C — Carolina

Should be in for: Andrei Svechnikov (Carolina)

Dunn and Bratt missed out largely due to their lack of title recognition. Sebastian Aho, alternatively?


It’s value remembering that the preliminary All-Star picks — when every of the 32 groups was given one consultant — had been introduced approach again on January 5, almost a full month earlier than the sport itself. And again on that day, Andrei Svechnikov did look like a defensible alternative as consultant for the Carolina Hurricanes over Aho.

Aho might have been the extra environment friendly per-game level producer again on January 5. But Svechnikov had performed in additional video games, nonetheless led in uncooked factors, and had considerably extra objectives. Without diving into superior metrics, it was a justifiable alternative.

Since then? Svechnikov hasn’t scored a single objective. Aho, alternatively? He has 12. In 13 video games.

aho svech2

Now Aho’s counting stats blow his teammate’s out of the water — he has extra objectives (23 to 19) and extra factors (46 to 42) in seven fewer video games. And that’s not even accounting for his edges in superior metrics. Aho grades out higher as a play-driver (ninety fifth percentile by xG impression to 88th percentile for Svechnikov) and leads in GAR by an 11 to five.4 margin.

But Aho has lengthy been a greater all-around participant than Svechnikov. It was within the counting stats that Svechnikov had the benefit. At least, he did again in early January.

Aho might have gotten off to a faster begin this season, after which he may need prevented the snub. But it’s nonetheless disappointing that one of many hottest gamers within the NHL gained’t be becoming a member of the All-Star festivities.

Brayden Point — F — Tampa Bay

Should be in for: Aleksander Barkov (Florida)

Let’s get it out of the way in which proper now: it makes good sense that Barkov was named the damage alternative for Auston Matthews. After all, the All-Star Game is being held on the Panthers’ area, and Barkov is the face of their franchise, their do-it-all 1C Selke Trophy winner. I get it.

Purely on benefit, nonetheless, he wasn’t the only option for 2022-23. Brayden Point was.

Point is definitely revered across the league, however my sense is that almost all followers don’t totally grasp simply how good he actually is. Over the earlier three seasons, Point ranked seventh amongst NHL facilities in Evolving-Hockey’s Goals Above Replacement metric, regardless of the truth that he missed 20 video games throughout these three years.

And presently, he’s within the midst of perhaps his greatest season but. Point is tied for tenth within the NHL in objectives (29), twenty second in factors, within the 91st percentile when it comes to xG impression at even power, and is pacing for a 50-goal, 92-point marketing campaign. Barkov, alternatively, has lower than half of Point’s objectives (he’s at 14) and narrowly trails Point in fairly all the important thing superior metrics and fashions. Point has been having the higher season by a not-insignificant margin.

In reality, the most effective argument in opposition to Point’s inclusion isn’t Barkov. It’s the opposite gamers within the Atlantic who had been additionally snubbed in favor of the native hero, specifically William Nylander (59 factors in 52 video games) and Steven Stamkos (57 in 48). But Point grades out as a greater play-driver than each, and has extra objectives than famous sniper Stamkos. They all would have been higher selections than Barkov, however the edge right here goes to Point, one of many league’s greatest low-key stars.

Jake Oettinger — G — Dallas

Should be in for: A goalie within the Pacific Division (and even Connor Hellebuyck)

The All-Star Game’s divisional format difficult the choice course of for goalies. Only one netminder per division was named initially, with the second chosen by fan vote. That meant, at most, solely two goaltenders per division, barring an damage.

And who was harm most by the format? Jake Oettinger.

Oettinger is having a Vezina-caliber season for the Central-leading Stars. He presently ranks third in uncooked save proportion at 0.923 amongst starters, trailing simply Linus Ullmark and Ilya Sorokin. He’s fifth in Goals Saved Above Expectation (+21.95 per Evolving-Hockey), trailing simply Ullmark, Sorokin, Juuse Saros and Hellebuyck. He trails solely Ullmark in Goals Above Average at 2.26, and as proof that he’s not merely a product of Dallas’ stingy system, he’s considerably outplaying high quality backup Scott Wedgewood (0.911 save proportion, 2.97 GAA, +1.60 GSAx).

The one factor all these different named goalies have in frequent (except for Wedgewood, in fact)? They’re All-Stars. And Oettinger isn’t.

Oettinger’s drawback, in fact, is that two of these 4 netminders — Saros and Hellebuyck — are additionally within the Central Division, they usually pushed Oettinger out of a well-deserved spot. Compare Oettinger’s divisional competitors to that of the West’s different division, the Pacific. Oettinger’s work blows that of Logan Thompson (0.913 save proportion, -2.41 GSAx) and Stuart Skinner (0.914, +12.78) away. It’s not even shut.

But even when the NHL couldn’t magically transfer Oettinger over to the Pacific for All-Star choice functions, the Stars’ goalie has a reasonably strong case to have made it over Hellebuyck specifically. Hellebuyck definitely has the longer profession monitor document of brilliance. But wanting solely at 2022-23, it’s not tough to argue that Oettinger has been a smidge higher.

oettinger hellebuyck

All statistics courtesy of Evolving Hockey. Delta SV% measures how a lot greater (or decrease) a goalie’s precise save proportion is compared to his “expected” save proportion on all unblocked pictures confronted.

It’s splitting hairs to say that Oettinger deserved an All-Star nod over Hellebuyck. In reality, they each did. Oettinger simply bought snubbed by the system.

Just missed: Steven Stamkos (Tampa Bay), Zach Hyman (Edmonton), Joe Pavelski (Dallas), Travis Konecny (Philadelphia)

 (Photo of Jack Oettinger: Tom Pennington / Getty Images )

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