Clayton Keller, the Coyotes leading scorer this season with 26 points (12-14-26), is off to Las Vegas to play in the 2022 NHL All-Star Game. The League announced on Thursday evening (Jan. 13) that Keller would be on the Central Division roster.
"The All-Star Game is something that not everyone gets to do, and I definitely don't take it for granted," said Keller.
2022 will be the second time Keller has been selected to the showcase. He went to San Jose in 2019 as a 20-year-old and is now a two-time All-Star before turning 24. Since the franchise relocated to Arizona, 10 players have represented the Coyotes at the All-Star game on multiple occasions.
Keller is in the midst of a 18-game run that's seen him total 20 points (9-11-20) and has been producing among the League's best since mid-November on.
"You can certainly see the confidence he's playing with right now and the numbers usually come along with that," said Coyotes General Manager Bill Armstrong. "You can see points in the game when he has the puck and he's the best player on the ice."
While Keller emphasizes he doesn't take his success for granted, he's not worried about any outside noise or what the selection means for his reputation as a player around various league circles. All he's focused on is showing up to work and playing hard.
"I've always loved the game and try not to worry about being noticed or in the spotlight," he said. "I always like to let my play do the talking and go from there."
Often times when one does something for a second time, they have a better sense of what to expect. Now that this is trip number two for Keller, he's suddenly found himself as just one of three players on the Central Division roster who are multi-time all-stars pending Last Men In ballot results.
"It's awesome to be surrounded by such great players," said Keller. "It's cool talking with other guys around the League, talking about their seasons, who they like to play against and things like that. It's definitely fun to be around them."
It certainly won't hurt talking shop with the likes of Kirill Kaprizov, Kyle Connor, Nathan MacKinnon, among others.
The All-Star game will feature three games between the four divisions in a 3-on-3, single elimination format. Each team represents the league's four divisions, and the last one standing is declared the winner. The first game begins at approximately 1 p.m. Mountain Time and will be broadcasted on ESPN+ and ABC.