Bratt blog ASG

New Jersey Devils forward Jesper Bratt kept a blog throughout the 2024 NHL All-Star Weekend. In his final entry, he wraps up his experiences in the 2024 Honda (U.S.)/Rogers (Canada) NHL All-Star Game at Scotiabank Arena on Saturday. Bratt and Team Hughes lost the second semifinal to Team Matthews 6-5 in the shootout. He did not have a point in his first All-Star appearance but got to meet Wayne Gretzky, who joined coach Rick Tocchet of the Vancouver Canucks behind the bench.

Today was awesome. First of all, it was great being back on the ice. We probably had seven or eight days off the ice from the last time we played a game. So obviously I have been itching to get back on the ice and be out there in a competitive game. I was kind of hoping the game was going to be a little longer than it was, but it was good being out there.

I felt like I just started get going there toward the end of the game after the long break. It was a good experience. It was fun to be out there.

It's a fun game, but it's obviously a different game and it's a little harder game to play sometimes when the pace and the space get a little different than a normal game, and obviously the decision-making gets a little different because you maybe don't shoot in areas that you normally would have shot at or creating chances and things like that. But it's a cool experience to be a part of. I'm very honored and very happy to be a part of it and see what it's like. Been such a cool experience.

Seeing Gretzky was a special moment. You can’t beat seeing the best one who ever played behind your bench. This was the first time I met him. I didn’t have much time with him. We just exchanged a couple of words about the game. He was just enjoying the game and having a good time hanging out on the bench. It was a cool, cool experience.

I had never met Tocchet before either. That was pretty cool too. Obviously we had a lot of Canucks players, so there was a connection there. We're all just trying to have a good time and enjoying the moment. There's a lot of a lot of characters on our team, so it was a good time.

For me though, the best memories are the ones I put together and shared with my family that was here to celebrate. It’s been such a long journey to here for me from being a young player in Sweden watching all the big stars in the NHL play, then going from a sixth-round pick in the NHL Draft and seven or eight years later to be in this position. It’s pretty cool, and it’s motivated me to work even harder and see where it takes me in the future.  

Now that the All-Star Weekend is finished, I'm so excited to be getting back to New Jersey and getting after it for real. Like I said before, it was the first time for me on the ice in seven or eight days and I kind of got a little taste of being back on the ice, and obviously that makes me want to go back and start this important part of the season that we have ahead of us.