TAMPA -- The San Jose Sharks will host the 2019 NHL All-Star Game.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman made the announcement on Saturday, prior to the 2018 GEICO NHL All-Star Skills Competition at Amalie Arena, that the League will hold its midseason showcase event at SAP Center.
"We're looking forward to bringing the All-Star festivities back to San Jose for the first time since 1997," Commissioner Bettman said at a media availablity.
The All-Star Skills Competition will take place Jan. 26 followed by the All-Star Game on Jan. 27.
"It's very big for San Jose to land the All-Star Game simply for our fans," Sharks president John Tortora told NHL.com. "I've been with the Sharks now for seven years, and so many fans come up to me and still talk about the 1997 All-Star Game. The SAP Center opened in 1993, so to bring the game back after 22 years is long overdue and it's primarily for our fans to celebrate the great game of hockey."
Video: Commissioner Bettman on expansion, overseas games
Tortora said the Sharks were informed of the NHL's decision to award the event to San Jose earlier this week. He said the Sharks' business operations staff is in the process of developing a vision for the layout for all of the events, including The Pregame, the NHL's three-day free fan fest, which requires a lot of space for all of the activities.
The PreGame in Tampa is taking place in a large parking lot outside Amalie Arena and in a park across the street.
"I think the fan base will be highly energized by this," Tortora said. "I have fans coming up to me all the time asking, 'When are we going to get the All-Star Game again, when are we going to get the All-Star Game?' Here we are. I'm looking forward to delivering it for the fans."
All-Star Weekend will be at least the third major NHL event hosted by the Sharks since 2015. They were the home team in the 2015 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game against the Los Angeles Kings at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara and faced the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2016 Stanley Cup Final.
"We anticipate hopefully another Stanley Cup Final in between, so that's not done yet," Tortora said. "It's a great string of events that we're having.
"Our fans have a very deep connection to hockey, to the Sharks and to the city of San Jose. There's a lot of civic pride in the city so for us to deliver this type of event for the city and the economic impact it will have is outstanding."