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Pass or Fail: Goalies in fastest skater, accuracy shooting SuperSkills events

Sean Leahy
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After years of fan apathy towards the NHL All Star Game, the league gave new VP of Hockey and Business Development Brendan Shanahan(notes) the reins and told him to fix it.

Fix it Shanahan has with the elimination of the East/West format and fans now voting in just six players, with the rest being selected by the Hockey Operations department and the teams chosen by two captains.

Also set to be tweaked on Shanahan's list is the NHL SuperSkills competition. The old favorites like the hardest shot, shooting accuracy and breakaway relay will remain, but now the goaltenders will be more involved other than stopping pucks.

Goalies were involved in that wild obstacle course relay competition in 2008, but Shanahan's plan is to add a shooting accuracy and fastest skater competition for the netminders to participate in.

Earlier this week, Shanahan worked with the Brampton Battalion of the OHL in testing six skills competition events, including those with goaltenders.

From NHL.com:

During debriefings after the skills testing, Shanahan told gathered television executives that he thinks the All-Star goalies will enjoy being part of the shooting accuracy event in which the shooter needs to break four targets in the corners of the goal.

"I asked (New Jersey Devils goalie) Marty Brodeur if he could hit the targets and he thought yes," said Shanahan. "I asked him if we needed the goalies closer to the net to hit the targets and he said no, not necessary. The NHL goalies have said they want to be part of it. We will ask the six goalies who make the game how they feel about it."

Another new wrinkle to the skills testing will be to add goalies to the fastest skater event ("I thought that was cool to watch the big guys; they can move," said Shanahan) and pick two defensemen to perform a skate-off backwards.

"It's still a work in progress," said Shanahan. "We feel like we are ahead of schedule and that we will create something that fans and players will all like."

The idea of seeing goaltenders skating around RBC Center and competing for the fastest time sounds interesting the first time you hear it. But then the end result is Carey Price(notes), in full pads, striding slowly around the rink to record a 25-second time. What's the appeal? Because it's different?

(Speaking of the fastest skater competition, can we go back to two guys on the ice going around at the same time?)

Goalies shooting out four targets sounds like a good idea, but not everyone is Martin Brodeur(notes) or Marty Turco(notes). Have you seen Marc-Andre Fleury(notes) try and handle a puck? We'd love it if the goalies had to a shoot a puck from one end of the ice through a small hole in a cut-out board like during an intermission.

So, with all that ...

Pass or Fail: Goalies in fastest skater, accuracy shooting SuperSkills events.

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