The NHL has named a replacement for Carey Price who has decided to skip the events — Andrei Vasilevskiy.
The Russian-born goalie has been named as the replacement for the Atlantic division's team in the upcoming NHL All-Star weekend. Price decided that he wouldn't be participating in the upcoming events due to him already missing time earlier this season and wanting to be healthy for later in the season.
This is similar to Alex Ovechkin's situation where he announced weeks ago that he wouldn't be partaking in any of the events, due to wanting to be healthy for the back-half of the season.
After being named to the #NHLAllStar Game earlier today, Andrei Vasilevskiy made 31 saves to move into a tie for second place on the @TBLightning's all-time shutouts list:— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) January 9, 2019
17 - Ben Bishop
14 - Andrei Vasilevskiy
14 - Nikolai Khabibulin#NHLStats pic.twitter.com/V1kAUteolq
Vasilevskiy has only played in 23 games this season due to a broken foot. This is likely why he wasn't named to the All-Star game initially because, when he's healthy, he's one of the top goalies in the league.
So far in 23 games this season, Vasilevskiy has produced a 2.55 goals against average, along with a .923 save percentage. Which ranks him in the top-ten in both categories in the Eastern Conference.
The 24-year-old also has two shutouts and 17 wins to go along with that. Those numbers make him the best choice to replace Price at the events in San Jose later this month. He will join his teammates, Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov adding to the total of three members of the Lightning representing their team at the events.
That number ties the San Jose Sharks for the most players being represented at the All-Star events. This will also be the second-straight season that Vasilevskiy has been named to the All-Star game.
Vasilevskiy will join Buffalo Sabers goalie, Carter Hutton, as the goalies for the Atlantic division team as they will look to defeat their demons from last season's game. When the Pacific division team defeated the Atlantic division team by a score of five to two, capturing the three-on-three All-Star tournament.
The Lightning goaltender will look to do his best at replacing Price for the Atlantic division team, and proving again why he's one of the best goalies in the NHL.
What This Means
Vasilevskiy is the best choice to replace Price at the All-Star events, he would have likely been chosen right beside Price if he wasn't hurt earlier in the season. He's one of the best goalies in the NHL and he deserves to be at the All-Star game.
He will likely be in the top-three voting in the Vezina Trophy again this year, which is why the NHL likely decided to choose him as the replacement for the Hab's starter. So, that the NHL's best players are represented at the All-Star's festivities.