The 2022-23 NHL season goes on the All-Star break starting on Thursday, Feb. 2. Most NHL teams have been on their bye week heading into the break. NHL All-Star weekend pits all four divisions against each other to see who comes out on top. Here we’ll go over everything you need to know for All-Star weekend.
2023 NHL Skills Competition
The skills comp was held on Friday night and here are some of the winners of the competitions:
Fastest skater — Andrei Svechnikov
Hardest shot — Elias Pettersson
Accuracy shooting — Brock Nelson
We’ll start with the Atlantic Division, which is pretty stacked this season. The Boston Bruins are on top of the NHL standings as of the break and appear poised to take home another Presidents’ Trophy. Behind the Bruins are the rival Toronto Maple Leafs and Tampa Bay Lightning, on another collision course for a first-round matchup. Last season, the Bolts got the best of the Leafs. The Florida Panthers, who will host this year’s All-Star festivities, are outside the playoff picture after finishing with the most points in the NHL last season.
The Metropolitan Division could give the ATL a run for its money. The Carolina Hurricanes entered this season with Cup aspirations and that still stands despite dealing with injuries to Max Pacioretty, Ondrej Kase, and Jake Gardiner. Carolina has the fast track to winning the division and securing a top seed in the playoffs. The New Jersey Devils may be the surprise of hockey in 2022-23, led by Hart Trophy hopeful Jack Hughes. Aside from them, it’s the rest of the usual characters with the New York Rangers, New York Islanders, Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals all vying for three spots.
The Central Division is not being steamrolled by the defending champion Colorado Avalanche. In fact, if the season ended during the break, the Avs would be a Wild Card team. The Dallas Stars, Winnipeg Jets, and Minnesota Wild are the top-3 teams in the division at this point. Colorado is starting to get healthy and should get back into contention for a top-3 spot in the division.
The Pacific is led by a surprise team in the Seattle Kraken in their second season in the NHL. The expansion team is deep, rolling four lines most nights, and have gotten good play out of veteran goalie Martin Jones. The team on the outside looking in, similar to the Avs, is the Edmonton Oilers, led by Hart Trophy favorite Connor McDavid. The Los Angeles Kings are right ahead of the Oilers in third place in the division, their season saved by AHL goalie Pheonix Copley.