The Dallas Stars have been chosen to host the 2007 NHL All-Star Game, an honor slightly more coveted than getting the Arena Bowl, though considerably less exciting than the World Curling Championships.

Islanders coach Steve Stirling on the benching of captain Alexi Yashin for the final 16 minutes of last night’s loss to Ottawa ;

“It was lazy, sloppy and just coming off an awful power play,” Stirling said. “Anything more I have to say?”

No, I think that about covers it. Maybe Stephon Marbury can offer Yashin some sage advice about the right way to handle such a critique.

Several years ago, I had the pleasure of spending Christmas week in Las Vegas, where the IHL’s now defunct Thunder were doing-their-thing at the Thomas & Mack Center. With their fingers on the pulse of something or other, Thunder management arranged for Quiet Riot’s Kevin DuBrow to sing “The Star Spangled Banner”. While it wasn’t quite R. Kelly (or Liz Phair), it was still a memorable rendition (for one thing, it sounded nothing like Slade).

Sidearm Delivery’s Brushback informs us that although the IHL has long since left Vegas, the marketing savvy is still in ample supply. Not only are the ECHL’s Wranglers playing some of their home games at midnight, but a recent contest with the Long Beach Ice Dogs was preceeded by a performance by Mini Kiss.

No minor league hockey love for the Kissfits (shown above), however, which is a very sobering thought on this most unsober of days.