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Bergeron Continues All-Star Weekend with Team Toews

by Caryn Switaj / Boston Bruins

COLUMBUS - The light atmosphere of NHL All-Star Weekend has lended itself to a more relaxed Patrice Bergeron.

After being the ninth selection of "Team Toews" during Friday night's NHL All-Star Fantasy Draft, Bergeron walked the red carpet prior to Saturday night's Skills Competition at Nationwide Arena.

The Bruins center hasn't ever been flashy and never will be, but he's been embracing these star-studded events, like the NHL Awards in Las Vegas last June.

"Yeah its definitely different, I don't think I could get used to those red carpets but it's fun to see the fans and how people are happy to be here and love hockey," Bergeron said, after pausing for a dozen interviews on the red carpet. "So far it's been great and just looking forward to the Skills Competition."

For five days, the talk around the League and the Bruins has turned from scoring, forechecking, turnovers, wins and losses, and 'turning their game around,' to all-stars, red carpets, fantasy drafts, shootout moves and topics that don't pertain the 2014-15 season.

Knowing that, Bergeron has embraced the weekend for what it is - a time to enjoy it and relax, while knowing that once Monday rolls around, the mindset will shift right back to much more important matters.

When we caught up with the alternate captain before the Skills Competition, he was enjoying himself and preparing for his duties for the night on Jonathan Toews' team (Columbus' Nick Foligno is serving as captain of the other squad).

"I'm wearing a suit. And shoes," he joked of his red carpet attire, before going into his mindset for the NHL Accuracy Shooting Competition.

"I studied some of the old Ray Bourque tape. He's definitely a master at it, so I'm not saying I'm going to be anywhere close to him, but he's definitely the perfect guy to study from," Bergeron smiled.

In addition to the accuracy challenge, he's been chosen for the NHL Shootout and NHL Skills Challenge Relay, in which he will be a passer for one-timers. That should be like clockwork for him.

"That's fine - passer. I'm actually happy you're saying that because I wasn't sure," he laughed. "I saw my name on the skills relay and there's lots of things in that relay. I was kind of worried about some of them, so I'm happy I'm a passer."

"Shootout is definitely something - it's always fun, it's always one of those things you enjoy doing and tried thinking about something, have a move for tonight but we'll see what happens. I might just go with what I see, I guess."

Bergeron plans to just let his moves flow.

"Yeah, it won't be that flashy, I'll tell you that."

With Foligno leading the opposing team, he'll have the backing of the hometown Columbus fans.

"It'd be a good road win, it'd be nice," Bergeron joked of his team's chances. "It's nice to have there's lots of guys from Team Canada on my team that I've known from previous Olympics so it will be nice to see them and be on the same side as them."

"It's all fun here. We're trying to enjoy it and we'll put on a good show."

While the whole weekend is for fun, and built around the fan experience, Bergeron's approach to it has showcased even further (if that's possible) why he's such a strong candidate to represent the League in the manner which he does.

"I just need a chance," he had laughed on Friday night, prior to the Fantasy Draft. "I just need to get drafted and see what happens, and hopefully I can help my team."

When Rick Nash announced Bergeron as the ninth selection for Team Toews, his intro went like this: "One of the best players in the League, who does it all - Patrice Bergeron."

"That was really nice," said Bergeron. "I was actually talking when he was introducing me because I didn't think my name was going to be called that early and then yeah, I was surprised, it was definitely a nice intro and I'm happy to be on the team."

So, just as he operates during the season, as a 'team guy,' Bergeron has naturally taken that approach to All-Star Weekend.

Hey, all he needed was a chance.

"Exactly, that's all I wanted."

The NHL All-Star Skills Competition kicks off on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. ET, with the All-Star Game beginning at 5:00 p.m. ET on Sunday. All TV coverage is provided by NBCSN in the United States (CBC in Canada).

Stay tuned to BostonBruins.com, the Bruins Mobile App and on Twitter @NHLBruins for the latest updates from our #WeekendwithBergy.

Below is the rundown from the NHL for the Skills events in which Bergeron is participating.

DraftKings NHL Accuracy Shooting™

Team Foligno Team Toews

Bobby Ryan, OTT Ryan Getzlaf, ANA
Nick Foligno, CBJ Patrice Bergeron, BOS
Radim Vrbata, VAN John Tavares, NYI
Patrick Kane, CHI Jonathan Toews, CHI
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM (passer) Rick Nash, NYR (passer)
Anze Kopitar, LAK (passer) Patrik Elias, NJ (passer)

Event description: Four players from each team will compete, with two additional players serving as passers. This event will consist of four head-to-head match-ups, one shooter from each team per round. The goal is to hit four 15-inch diameter targets located in each corner of the net. The teams will be situated at opposite ends of the rink, and will alternate shot attempts. The first shooter to hit all four targets wins. Five team points are available. The winner of each match-up scores one point; the player who hits all four targets in the fastest time scores the bonus point.

Gatorade NHL Skills Challenge Relay™

Team Foligno Team Toews

Relay 1 Relay 1
Drew Doughty, LAK (one-timer RH) Shea Weber, NSH (one-timer RH)
Ryan Johansen, CBJ (one-timer RH) Justin Faulk, CAR (one-timer RH)
Steven Stamkos, TBL (one-timer RH) Tyler Seguin, DAL (one-timer RH)
Brent Burns, SJS (one-time passer) Ryan Getzlaf, ANA (one-time passer)
Anze Kopitar, LAK (mini net passer) John Tavares, NYI (mini net passer)
Kevin Shattenkirk, STL (puck control) Johnny Gaudreau, CGY (puck control)
Patrick Kane, CHI (stick handling) Mike Hoffman, OTT (stick handling)
Carey Price, MTL (goalie goals) Jaroslav Halak, NYI (goalie goals)

Relay 2 Relay 2
Zemgus Girgensons, BUF (one-timer LH) Mark Giordano, CGY (one-timer LH)
Duncan Keith, CHI (one-timer LH) Ryan Suter, MIN (one-timer LH)
Nick Foligno, CBJ (one-timer LH) Jakub Voracek, PHI (one-timer LH)
Jiri Sekac, MTL (one-time passer) Patrice Bergeron, BOS (one-time passer)
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM (mini net passer) Tyler Johnson, TBL (mini net passer)
Drew Doughty, LAK (puck control) Vladimir Tarasenko, STL (puck control)
Oliver Ekman-Larsson, ARI (stick handling) Filip Forsberg, NSH (stick handling)
Marc-Andre Fleury, PIT (goalie goals) Roberto Luongo, FLA (goalie goals)

Event description: This timed relay event – involving 14 skaters and one goalie from each team – will consist of five challenges: One-Timers, with three shooters and one passer per team; Passing, with one passer per team; Puck Control, with one skater per team; Stick-Handling, with one skater per team; and Goalie Goals, with one goalie per team. Each challenge must be completed before moving on to the next one. The goal is to finish all five challenges faster than the opponent. Three team points are available. The team with the fastest time in each heat scores one point; the team with the fastest overall time scores one bonus point.

Discover NHL Shootout™

Team Foligno Team Toews

Round 1 Round 1
Alex Ovechkin, WSH Patrice Bergeron, BOS
Kevin Shattenkirk, STL Mike Hoffman, OTT
Patrick Kane, CHI Tyler Seguin, DAL
Dustin Byfuglien, WPG Aaron Ekblad, FLA
Zemgus Girgensons, BUF Shea Weber, NSH
Nick Foligno, CBJ Vladimir Tarasenko, STL
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, EDM Ryan Suter, MIN
Brian Elliott, STL (goaltender) Jaroslav Halak, NYI (goaltender)

Round 2 Round 2
Jonathan Drouin, TB Justin Faulk, CAR
Oliver Ekman-Larsson, ARI Johnny Gaudreau, CGY
Brent Burns, SJS John Tavares, NYI
Jiri Sekac, MTL Brent Seabrook, CHI
Duncan Keith, CHI Patrik Elias, NJD
Anze Kopitar, LAK Rick Nash, NYR
Radim Vrbata, VAN Mark Giordano, CGY
Marc-Andre Fleury, PIT (goaltender) Roberto Luongo, FLA (goaltender)

Round 3 Round 3
Bobby Ryan, OTT Ryan Getzlaf, ANA
Phil Kessel, TOR John Tavares, NYI
Ryan Johansen, CBJ Jonathan Toews, CHI
Drew Doughty, LAK Filip Forsberg, NSH
Steven Stamkos, TBL Tyler Seguin, DAL
Claude Giroux, PHI Jakub Voracek, PHI
Nick Foligno, CBJ Rick Nash, NYR
Carey Price, MTL (goaltender) Corey Crawford, CHI (goaltender)

Event description: All players will participate in this three-round shootout. During each two-minute round, seven skaters and one goalie from each team will take the ice. The goalies will take their place in net, and the skaters will line up in the offensive zone, facing their opposing goalie. Each player is given 10 seconds to take a shot. Teams will alternate after each shot until the two-minute clock runs down. Every third puck will be a Discover card puck, which is worth more points. Each scoring attempt is officiated following NHL shootout rules. Points available: one point for every goal scored; two points for every goal scored with a Discover card puck.
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