All-Star games in professional sports have become rather ridiculous in the past decade or three. When players earn millions of dollars each year, there’s a great deal of concern about the possibility of injury in a game that doesn’t even count. Players opt out, rules are changed for safety, and whole thing becomes rather silly. Nevertheless, the games draw attention and earn money, so they persist. But this year, one player who wants to be at the NHL All-Star Game, and should be, won’t be seen in Nashville.
[The NHL] took a surprisingly heartwarming moment and story for the sport and obliterated it out of pettiness and pride for a fake hockey game, causing real-life consequences for a low-paid player and his growing family.
Fan voting in the age of the Internet is a terrible system, one that’s bound to be abused. If you’re going to use it, however, you damned sure ought to deal with the consequences. The NHL did not. Instead, when it came to John Scott, they blew it.
Update (February 1st, 2016): John Scott ultimately did get to compete at All-Star Weekend, and he damn sure made the most of it.