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Running down the All-Star Game numbers

by John Kreiser
The 57th NHL All-Star Game takes place Jan. 25 at the Bell Centre in Montreal. The game has evolved quite a bit from the early days, when defense and goaltending dominated. For most of the past two decades, it's been a shooter's delight and a nightmare for the goaltenders -- happily for the goalies, they now only play one period each.

But it hasn't always been that way. Here's a look at some All-Star history ... by the numbers.

0.68 -- Goals-against average by Gilles Villemure of the New York Rangers in his three All-Star appearances, the best of anyone who's played two or more games and 60 or more minutes.

1 -- Shutouts in All-Star Game history -- a mark that's not likely to be enlarged any time soon. The Montreal Canadiens blanked the All-Stars 3-0 in 1967, the last game of the Original Six Era -- and the first played at midseason rather than before the start of the season.

2 -- Fewest goals scored in an All-Star Game. The 1952 game at Detroit ended in a 1-1 tie between the First Team and Second Team NHL stars.

3 -- 18-year-olds who've played in the All-Star Game. Toronto's Fleming Mackell (18 years, 5 months, 13 days in 1947) and Detroit's Larry Hillman (18 years, 6 months 27 days in 1955) played as members of the defending Stanley Cup champions. The only 18-year-old to play under any of the post-1968 formats was Detroit's Steve Yzerman, who was 18 years, 8 months and 22 days old when he made his first All-Star team in 1984.

4 -- Most points in a period. Wayne Gretzky had 4 goals the third period in 1983; Mike Gartner had 3 goals and 1 assist and Adam Oates had 4 assists in the first period 10 years later.

5 -- Players who've scored four goals in an All-Star Game. Wayne Gretzky was the first, in 1983; Dany Heatley was the most recent, in 2003. Gretzky is the only player to get four in a period; Heatley scored four in regulation and connected in the shootout.

6 -- Most points scored by one player in an All-Star Game. Pittsburgh's Mario Lemieux had 3 goals and 3 assists for six points in the 1988 game at St. Louis. Montreal's Mats Naslund set up all three of Lemieux's goals and finished with five assists, also an All-Star record.

7 -- Most goals in one period of an All-Star Game, a mark set by the Wales Conference in the first period of the 1990 game at Pittsburgh. Seven teams, most recently the West in the second period in 2007, have had six.

8 -- Seconds needed for the fastest two goals by one team in All-Star play. The record was actually set by one player -- San Jose's Owen Nolan, who scored at 18:54 and 19:02 of the second period for the Western Conference in 1997.

9 -- Consecutive games played in goal by Glenn Hall, the most by a goaltender in All-Star play. Hall took part in every game played from 1960 through 1969. His 540 minutes played is also an All-Star record, as are his 13 appearances.

10 -- Most shots on goal in an All-Star Game, a mark set in 1955 by Detroit's Earl Riebel and matched 42 years later by San Jose's Owen Nolan. Though Nolan outscored Riebel 3-2, Riebel's Red Wings were 3-1 winners against the NHL All-Stars, while Nolan and the Western Conference stars lost 11-7 to the Eastern Conference.

12 -- Seconds into the 2008 game at Atlanta before Rick Nash scored the first goal. Nash broke the mark set by Detroit's Ted Lindsay, who scored 19 seconds into the 1950 game, for the fastest goal from the opening faceoff in All-Star play.

13 -- All-Star Games played in Montreal, including this year's game. The first 12 were played at the Forum, beginning with the Howie Morenz Memorial Game in 1937. Since then, the 1980s are the only decade in which the Canadiens have not hosted an All-Star Game.

15 -- Years since a goaltender has been named the All-Star Game MVP. Mike Richter of the New York Rangers was the fifth and most recent, in 1994 -- he played the second period in the East's 9-8 win.

16 -- Years since the All-Star Game was last played in Montreal. It's also the number of goals scored by the victorious Eastern Conference in that year's 16-6 victory.

21 -- Seconds remaining in last year's game when Marc Savard scored the winning goal for the East in an 8-7 victory. It was the latest game-deciding goal in All-Star history.

23 -- All-Star Games played by Gordie Howe, more than anyone else (Ray Bourque is second with 19, all consecutively). Howe is also the oldest player ever to take part in an All-Star Game -- he was 51 years, 10 months, 5 days) when he skated in the 1980 All-Star Game in Detroit as a member of the Hartford Whalers.

26 -- Goals scored in the 2001 game, the most ever. Bill Guerin scored 3 goals and added 2 assists to earn MVP honors in North America's 14-12 victory against the World team at the Pepsi Center in Denver.

31 -- Goals allowed by Patrick Roy in his 11 All-Star appearances (250 minutes), the most by any goaltender. Roy, whose number was retired by the Canadiens on Nov. 22, started 10 times in those 11 games and won his only two decisions.
40 -- Years since the Stanley Cup winner vs. All-Stars format was dropped in favor of the East-West concept. The West All-Stars tied the East 3-3 in a game played at the Montreal Forum, with former Canadien Claude Larose of the Minnesota North Stars getting the tying goal with 2:53 left.
102 -- Most shots on goal in an All-Star Game. The East outshot the West 56-46 in its 9-8 victory at New York in 1994. The East's 56 shots are also the most by one team in All-Star history.

395 -- Players in the first 56 All-Star Games who were born in Canada, by far the most of any nation. The United States is second with 55, followed by Russia with 27.

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