Photo Credit: Norm Hall
Early in the 2006-07 season, Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Ed Jovanovski was more concerned with turning around the Coyotes season than he was about trying to make the All-Star game. At the same time, Yanic Perreault wasn't even on an NHL roster, but just a few short months later; the two are now preparing to represent Phoenix at the 2007 NHL All Star Game.
For Jovanovski, who is replacing Anaheim's Scott Niedermayer on the Western Conference roster, being named to his fourth career All-Star game is just as exciting as his first time back in 2001.
"It's exciting," said Jovanovski. "I think anytime you get that opportunity, it's an honor. I'm looking forward to it."
Making this year's game even more exciting is the fact that Jovanovski will be sharing the experience with one of his teammates, especially considering Perreault will be making his first appearance at the event.
"It's always nice when you have a partner there," said Jovanovski. "I know it made it easier my first time when I had a couple teammates with me. It's always nice to have someone with you."
While Jovanovski, who is widely regarded as one of the best defensemen in the game, has played in three of the last four NHL All-Star games, Perreault has waited 13-years wear the conference sweater.
"It took me a while to make the All-Star team," said Perreault. "Now with the new rules, I think it's been good for me."
Most NHLer's will spend next week resting and preparing for the second half of the season, something both Jovanovski and Perreault had planned on doing before being named to the Western Conference squad.
"I was going to Vegas," said Jovanovski. "I had all that booked, (now) I'll have my family going (to the All-Star game). My kids will come, it will be good."
"It's a surprise (for me)," said Perreault. "I didn't expect it, but it's going to be a great experience."
Coyotes fans will have no trouble cheering the Western Conference on to victory, the only question now is, which Coyote will be named the All-Star game MVP?