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  • NHL All-Star Game 2016: Match-ups, things to watch for


    The NHL has tried a number of things to get people interested in the the mid-winter exhibition to watch the NHL's best players gather and play together. From a standard Eastern Conference vs Western Conference match-up, a North America versus The World experiment, to fantasy, the NHL will now feature a 3-on-3 tournament.


    The teams are divided by division (Atlantic, Metropolitan, Central, and Pacific) and each team will feature six forwards, three defensemen, and two goalies. The games will be 20 minutes in duration as the Eastern teams will play first, the Western teams second, until the winners of each face-off in the final round to claim a champion of the first ever 3v3 tourney.

    What will be interesting to watch for is the strategies each team will play with in the 3v3 format. So far durung the regular season, it's been about controlling the puck and making line changes when the puck is in control. Since this isn't a sudden death period, it will be even more pertinent to get tired players off the ice. Also, early on, it was all about the counter-punch. The odd-man rushes took place as a team was going back the other way in transition. Expect this tournament to be no different.

    Another thing to watch for is your favorite goaltender's groin. Yes, the All-Star game already featured little to no defense at all, and 3v3 offers almost none. It is literally pond hockey with multi-million dollar players on the ice that possess crazy skills with the puck. Goalies will be left out to dry and you hope that none suffers an injury by pulling a muscle.

    Here are the match-up for the first two games today:



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