Don Cherry wasn’t a fan of the 2017 All-Star Game. Now, before you roll your eyes because Cherry has once again voiced an angry complaint towards something in hockey, he may kind of have a point. Kind of.
As expected, the All-Star Game didn’t feature a ton of effort from the players. That’s not a surprise, but the league attempted to play up that “this one matters” because $1 million would be given to the winners. The prize money didn’t really change the game and that lack of effort really bothered Cherry.
Yes, this is another instance of Cherry telling everyone to get off his lawn, but he does make a solid point about how he can’t possibly speak about the game in a serious manner – as the league wants – when the players are clearly just goofing around. At the same time, the goofing off and the odd interactions between rivals and opposing players is what makes the game actually worth watching.
The NHL wants the All-Star Game to pack more of a punch, but that’s not a winning formula. Major League Baseball can vouch for that as they tried the whole “this time it counts” idea and it backfired in a big way. The NHL needs to embrace the All-Star Game for what it is – a time to joke around – and play that up as much as possible.