Gary Bettman Hints at Major Change to Toronto's All Star Weekend This Season

Arron Murphy
September 28, 2023  (8:26 PM)

NHL's All Star Weekend's Past, Present, and Future.

Once upon a time, the NHL All-Star Game was a highly anticipated event for both players and fans.
It served as a showcase for the league's top talents, featuring two super-teams representing each conference battling it out on the ice.
Over the years, the format of the All-Star Weekend underwent various changes, from East vs. West matchups to North America vs. The World, and most recently, inter-division 3-on-3 tournament play.
Regrettably, these alterations led the event to become somewhat diluted, transitioning from a premier NHL showcase to more of a sideshow.

Gary Bettman Hints at His Plans to Change the NHL All Star Game for The Better

During the coverage of Kraft Hockeyville on Sportsnet, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman unveiled plans for changes to this year's All-Star festivities. Bettman explained that since the All-Star event was being held in Toronto this season, the intention was to scale it back slightly as a tribute to its historical significance.
He also mentioned that the All-Star Skills Competition would return to a more traditional format.
In recent years, we witnessed events like outdoor shooting accuracy competitions in Florida and Vegas, which didn't resonate well with the fanbase.
This year, it appears the NHL has recognized the need to revisit a format resembling the Skills Competitions from the event's prime.
Bettman didn't divulge too many specifics at this early stage, but it's heartening to see the NHL acknowledging the waning interest in All-Star Weekend and making efforts to address it.
While the tournament might still retain the 3-on-3 format, which may not be everyone's favourite, the shift toward a more traditional All-Star experience is a step in the right direction.