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Players excited for All-Star Game in St. Louis

Former All-Stars say St. Louis will make a great host for the event in 2020

by Chris Pinkert / St. Louis Blues

ST. LOUIS - There's no doubt St. Louis is going to make a great host for the 2020 Honda NHL All-Star Game.

Just ask the guys that have been there before.

"This is obviously great for the city," said Blues forward Brayden Schenn, who played in his first NHL All-Star Game in 2018. "St. Louis has hosted big events before, whether it's baseball or the Winter Classic. We know how to handle big events, and the All-Star Game is one of the biggest ones in the NHL. You get the red carpet, the players interact with the fans, the skills competition, stuff like that, and they make the game competitive now with the 3-on-3 and stuff like that.

"It will showcase the city a little bit, and it's good for the fans. They deserve it."

Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo, who has practically grown up in St. Louis after being drafted by the club in 2008, said he's excited to the see the city he loves be chosen to host another one of the League's premier events.

"It's a great opportunity for us to showcase what we have here," Pietrangelo told "It's not only great for us as an organization to show what's been done to the rink with the renovations, but also for the city in general, it's going to be good economically… There's no question that we're going to be a good host."

Pietrangelo made his NHL All-Star debut in 2018 and won the passing competition in the All-Star Skills competition in Tampa Bay. For him, being surrounded by the best players the game has to offer was one of the most memorable moments of the weekend.

"I think it's the camaraderie of being with the other players in the League that get voted for," he said. "Some guys you've played with, some guys you haven't played with. It puts everybody on the same stage and makes you feel like part of an elite group."

Video: Enterprise Center to host 2020 NHL All-Star Game

Like they did with the 2017 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic two years ago, the Blues will be making plans to turn All-Star Weekend into one of the biggest and best yet. While plans are still in the works, you can expect a weekend full of hockey-themed events, entertainment and activities.

The 2020 NHL All-Star Game will be the third hosted in St. Louis, but the first at the newly-renovated Enterprise Center, which first opened in 1994. The League brought the midseason showcase to St. Louis previously in 1970 and 1988 at the St. Louis Arena.

Enterprise Center was chosen to host the event in 2020 in large part due to the improvements made to the building over the last two summers. A third phase of renovations are planned for the upcoming offseason.

Ryan O'Reilly, who will participate in his second NHL All-Star Game later this month in San Jose, said St. Louis won't disappoint next year.

"It will be incredible," O'Reilly told "The fans alone here are awesome. It's special the way they love and support their hockey. It's going to bring a big buzz and a great turnout, but for the rest of the League, it's a chance to see how great the city is. When you come here for one day or one game (with the visiting team), you don't get to see what the city has to offer besides just the rink and the hotel. (Being here now), you see the other stuff around it.

"I'm sure the NHL will put on a great event, but it will be exciting to show off St. Louis."

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