The St. Louis Blues have officially hit the campaign trail to bring a future NHL All-Star Game to the “Heartland of Hockey.”
The organization debuted a convincing video pitch via social media this week, staking their claim as the next host city for the Mid-Season spectacle in 2020 or 2021. St. Louis native and actor John Goodman narrates the two-minute, 30-second video capturing the essence and hospitality St. Louis has to offer to the entire NHL fan base.
A few prominent selling points mentioned in the video by the Hollywood superstar include the thriving music scene on Broadway and the global businesses that made a name for themselves starting out in the Gateway City. A reference to the rich tradition of developing local hockey talent into the next collection of NHL mainstays like Matthew Tkachuk and Clayton Keller is touched upon as well. Finally, and the obvious one, the fans’ passionate love for hockey 50 years and beyond.
“Bring the celebration to the heart of America,” exclaimed Goodman in the piece. “Join St. Louis, and the Blues, as we continue to grow hockey in the Midwest!!”
If chosen, it would be the first time the Scottrade Center will host the NHL’s superstar exhibition in its nearly 23-year history. The targeted years coincide with the expected completion of the highly-publicized and much-needed renovations to the facility.
“We have never had an All-Star game in this building,” Blues president Chris Zimmerman said. “And we think what a great thing to do to move us forward and create a sense of what the future’s going to be here.”
The Blues played host to two previous All-Star Games at the old Arena (1970, 1988) that served as launching pads for a couple of players’ ascent to superstardom. In the 1970 showcase, legendary Philadelphia Flyers’ captain and future Hall of Famer Bobby Clarke made his All-Star Game debut as a substitute player for an injured Phil Goyette. Although Clarke didn’t record a single point during play, he made a lasting impression in front of the national media and was named NHL Rookie of the Year by The Sporting News at regular season’s end. Mario Lemieux notched a record six points and the game-winner in overtime during the 1988 contest to run away with the game’s Most Valuable Player Award. Let’s just say the hockey fans around here bring out the best in a player willing to make his mark on the big stage.