The Eastern Conference has bragging rights … at least for 24 hours. The East defeated the West, 15-11, in the 2015 AHL All-Star Skill Competition Sunday at the Utica Memorial Auditorium.
Paul Thompson and Joe Whitney, the Albany Devils representatives, each participated in three events. Thompson had a go at the accuracy shooting and Whitney skated in the puck control relay. They both competed in the pass and score event and the breakaway competition.
“It was a lot of fun for everyone involved,” Thompson said. “The players had a good time. They have a good group of fans here and it got loud at time, especially when Utica guys were going. It was the first time I’ve done anything like that and I enjoyed it. Seemed like the fans did too.”
Thompson and Whitney, who have a combined 73 regular-season points, teamed with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton’s Derrick Pouliot for the 3-on-0 pass and score challenge. The line had three attempts, but failed to convert.
“It’s actually a pretty tough event,” Whitney said.”You don’t want to be the guy who takes the shot. Somebody has to shoot. Maybe we tried to be a little too unselfish and maybe cost our team some goals.”
“None of us set each other as best as we could,” Thompson said. “It didn’t go as planned, but I think it’s a little more difficult than it looks even though it sounds simple.”
Thompson and Whitney have played together for the majority of the regular season and are expected to share the ice during Monday’s 7 pm All-Star Game.
Whitney said: “”We are just looking forward to tomorrow, have some fun and put on a show for the fans.”