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Huberdeau Ready To Have Fun at NHL All-Star Weekend

by Jameson Olive / @JamesonCoop /

There's no rest for the wickedly talented.

While the rest of the Florida Panthers plan to spend this weekend kicking up their feet, winger Jonathan Huberdeau will hit the ice for NHL All-Star Weekend at Enterprise Center in St. Louis.

His first trip to the annual event, Huberdeau enters the break as one of the most productive forwards in the league. Through 49 games, he leads the Panthers in assists (47), points (65), power-play points (24) and multi-point games (19), while also ranking second in goals (18).

"It's going to be fun," Huberdeau recently told "It's my first experience there, so I'm going to try and enjoy it as much as I can. Obviously, to be with the other guys on the other teams and having a chance to talk to them is going to fun. I'm looking forward to it."

Planning to fly out to St. Louis on Thursday with some family and friends, Huberdeau said he's eager to dive headfirst into everything that the star-studded weekend entails. From strolling down the red carpet to sharing the ice with fellow superstars, every second will be soaked in.

"Skills is going to be fun, and so is the game," Huberdeau said. "I'm going to enjoy the time."

All-Star Weekend will get underway with the Skills Competition on Friday, Jan. 24, which will feature four returning events -- Fastest Skater, Save Streak, Accuracy Shooting and Hardest Shot --- as well as the new and exciting Shooting Stars and Elite Women's 3-on-3 contests.

Huberdeau said he'd like to compete in any event where he can put his playmaking to use.

"That's one of my strengths, so, obviously, I'd like to do that," he said.

On Saturday, Jan. 25, Huberdeau will hit the ice once again for the NHL All-Star Game, a 3-on-3 tournament in which stars from the four divisions - Pacific, Central, Atlantic and Metropolitan - are pitted against each another. Huberdeau, of course, will be representing the Atlantic Division.

Each game in the tournament will be 20 minutes in length, with teams changing ends at the 10-minute mark of each game. If a game is tied after 20 minutes, it will be decided by a shootout. The winners of each semi-final game will play each other in the final to determine the champion.

Panthers coach Joel Quenneville said he's excited to see Huberdeau compete.

"We'll tune in," he said. "For Huby, it's well deserved. He's had a special first part of the year. He's had some tremendous plays. I'm happy for him. He's accomplished a lot this year in a short amount of time to start this season."

Luckily, once the wild weekend is over, there will still be plenty of time left to relax.

With the All-Star Game leading into their Bye Week, the Panthers won't return to practice until Thursday, Jan. 30, which will give Huberdeau ample time to recharge his batters before the team embarks on what is shaping up to be an inspiring push towards the playoffs in the second half.

Cruising into the break on the longest-active winning streak in the league, Florida picked up its sixth straight win with a 4-3 victory in Chicago on Tuesday. With that win, the team improved to 28-16-5 and gained a nice four-point cushion over Toronto for third place in the Atlantic Division.

"We said we wanted to go on a little streak before the All-Star break, and that's what we did," said Huberdeau, who notched at least one point in 14 of 17 games leading into the break. "That's what we wanted to do. We played good as a team. It was good to see that.

"Now, we've got to relax, get some more energy and come back for the second half. The rest of the season is going to be tough, so we've got to be prepared for that."

2020 NHL All-Star Weekend Schedule

NHL All-Star Skills Competition: Friday, Jan. 24, 8 p.m. ET (NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS)

NHL All-Star Game Tournament: Saturday, Jan. 25 (NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS)

  • Semifinal Game 1: Metropolitan vs. Atlantic, 8:15 p.m. ET
  • Semifinal Game 2: Pacific vs. Central, 9:15 p.m. ET
  • Final Game: Winner Game 1 vs. Winner Game 2, 10:15 p.m. ET

For updates on Huberdeau's all-star experience, follow @FlaPanthers on Twitter and stay tuned to

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