Islanders' Tavares wins accuracy shooting contest

Saturday, 01.30.2016 / 10:25 PM
Arpon Basu  - Managing Editor LNH.com

NASHVILLE -- The best players in the NHL can make something like the Draft Kings Accuracy Shooting Contest look easy.

The 2016 champ says that's not the case.

New York Islanders captain John Tavares was the best of the sharpshooters Saturday at the 2016 Honda All-Star Skills Competition, helping the Eastern Conference to a 3-2 win in the event.

"We're more nervous than you think. You take us out of our element a little bit," Tavares said. "The accuracy shooting is not quite the same kind of pace. You have a lot more time to think, whereas in in a game or in practice you're going on a read and trusting your instincts. It's just such a different pace than we're used to, but we should have enough skill to adapt."

Tavares took five shots to hit the four targets and needed 12.294 seconds to do it; by posting the fastest time among all the shooters, he earned an extra point for the East.

Forwards Joe Pavelski of the San Jose Sharks and Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins also hit the four targets on five shots, though Malkin might have cost himself a shot at perfection.

Malkin hit the target on his first three shots and looked like he was on track to go 4-for-4 and beat Tavares' time. He was in perfect rhythm, but before his fourth shot he gestured to the Bridgestone Arena crowd to get louder as he prepared to take his fourth attempt.

Malkin then struck the crossbar before hitting the target in the top right corner on his fifth attempt.

"Who knows? Maybe if I didn't do that maybe I score, maybe not," Malkin said. "It's all right, I've won before. Of course I want to win, but it's three [targets] after three shots, so I was a little bit mad, but it's fine... five goals on four shots is fine too."

Tavares and Malkin for the East and Pavelski and Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks for the West each won their matchups, earning a point apiece for their team.

Perry came closest to matching Tavares' time at 13.771 seconds.

EAST

John Tavares, New York Islanders / 12.294

Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins / 23.362

Claude Giroux, Philadelphia Flyers / 17.254

Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins / 16.179

WEST

Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks / 20.000

Joe Pavelski, San Jose Sharks / 14.088

Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks / 13.771

Jamie Benn, Dallas Stars / 16.664

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