It was announced yesterday that the Calgary Flames will have not one, not two, but three representatives at the NHL All-Star Game this month in St. Louis.
Joining the previously named Matthew Tkachuk and Mark Giordano is goaltender David Rittich, named to the Pacific Division team as Arizona Coyotes’ goaltender Darcy Kuemper is currently sidelined with an injury.
It’s a huge honour to be named an NHL all-star, regardless of the circumstance. To have three players attending from a single team is also a rare occurrence, especially since the NHL moved to the format where each team has at least one all-star named to the original teams.
The Flames will have the second most players at the ASG this month, and third most total representatives. Only the host St. Louis Blues have more players with four. Counting total representatives, the Blues have five including Craig Berube who was selected as the Central Division coach, and the Washington Capitals have four including three players and Todd Rierden who was selected as the Metropolitan Division coach.
Only two teams, the Arizona Coyotes and Anaheim Ducks, do not have a representative at the ASG this year, primarily due to injuries to the players who were names originally.
The Flames’ History
The 65th ASG this year marks the first time the Flames will have three representatives in 28 years. The last time the team had at least three all-stars was the 43rd ASG in 1992 when Theoren Fleury, Al MacInnis, and Gary Roberts were selected. The Flames actually had at least three all stars in each year from 1988 to 1992.
In franchise history, the most number of all-star players the Flames have had is five, which occurred 1988. The Flames sent MacInnis, Brad McCrimmon, Joe Nieuwendyk, Gary Suter, and Mike Vernon that year.
In terms of total representatives, the Flames also sent five people to the ASG in 1990: MacInnis, Joe Mullen, Nieuwendyk, Vernon, and Head Coach Terry Crisp. Only two Flames coaches have ever coached in the All-Star Game, Crisp being one of them.
Johnny Gaudreau owns the franchise record for most consecutive All-Star Game appearances with five, from 2015 to 2019. His streak unfortunately came to an end this season after failing to secure the last man in vote.
In the 65 year history of the All-Star Game, the Flames have had one representative 21 times, two representatives 13 times, three representatives twice, four representatives twice, and five representatives twice. They have only not had a representative just one time; In 2001, no Flames were selected to the team.
The 2020 rosters have not been completely finalized yet, with Tuukka Rask opting out of the festivities and Gerard Gallant being fired by the Vegas Golden Knights yesterday. Perhaps Flames’ coach Geoff Ward will replace him?
A huge congratulations to the three Flames all-stars in 2020. Here’s to the well deserved honour, and to a successful second half of the season.