The Metropolitan Division took down the Central Division 5-3 in the 2022 NHL All-Star game at T-Mobile Arena.
Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux scored twice for the Metropolitan Division, including a goal at the 2:42 mark in the second period that gave the Metropolitan Division a 5-3 lead that ended up being the final score.
"We had a blast today, everybody was having a good time…We just had fun,” Giroux told reporters after the game.
Giroux took home MVP honors after the game, as he scored three goals and registered an assist between the Metropolitan Division’s wins against the Pacific and Central Division.
The Metropolitan Division jumped out to an early 1-0 lead less than 30 seconds into the game after Washington Capitals' forward Evgeny Kuznetsov scored.
After Clayton Keller tied the game at 1-1 for the Central, Giroux and New York Ranger forward Chris Kreider scored to push the Metropolitan lead to 3-1.
The Metropolitan Division took a 4-2 lead at the end of the first period after New Jersey Devils center Jack Hughes scored late in the first half, after Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri made it a one-goal game.
The Central Division cut it to one goal as Dallas Stars forward Joe Pavelski scored 1:19 into the second half. Giroux's goal put it back to a two-goal lead for the Metropolitan. Caroline Hurricanes goalie Frederik Andersen stopped the Central Divison’s comeback attempt with some great saves to secure the win.
"Guys just wanted to win,” Giroux said. “Kuznetsox was like ‘I’m going to be the hardest working guy out there,’ I’ve never seen him work so hard for face-offs before, even when I played against him in the regular season. We were having fun with it by just working hard.”
The players for the Metropolitan Division took home a check for $1 million dollars to split amongst the team.
Before the Metropolitan and Central Division squared off for the title All-Star Game winners, they each beat the Pacific and Atlantic Divisions, respectively in their semifinal matchups.
Metropolitan Division 6, Pacific Division 4
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Peter DeBoer chose to start all three Golden Knights in the Pacific Division’s matchup with the Metropolitan Division. Despite having the home crowd support, playing the home of the Pacific Division leaders, the Metropolitan took a 6-4 win over the Knights heavy Pacific team.
With Mark Stone, Jonathan Marchessault, and Alex Pietrangelo on the ice to start, the Pacific Division allowed a goal in the first 13 seconds of the game to Capitals forward Tom Wilson.
I don’t know what happened,” Marchessault said in a light-hearted tone after the game. “I know that me, Stoney, and Petro were looking at each other, we were kind of shocked how quickly it went in.
Timo Meier tied it up for the Pacific Division, but goals from Giroux and Hurricane forward Sebastian Aho gave the Metropolitan Division a 3-1 lead after the first period.
Marchessault scored in his All-Star Game debut to cut it to 3-2, and the Pacific Division tied it at the 4:27 mark on a goal from Seattle Kraken forward Jordan Eberle.
But three straight goals from the Metropolitan Division, two from Hughes, to push their lead to 6-3.
Aside from a late goal from Stone, the Pacific Division never got close to tying the game.
Even though the Pacific Division came up short, the members of the Golden Knights enjoyed their time in the All-Star game and expressed excitement for the city to be shown on a national stage during the All-Star Game.
"It was cool to look around and see our fans,” Stone said. “They’re so passionate, they love coming to the games and watching us. It was good to have the three of us there and get a start together.”
Central Division 8, Atlantic Division 5
In the second semifinal, the Central Division put on a scoring clinic with six different players registering goals in their 8-5 win over the Atlantic Division.
St. Louis Blues forward Jordan Kyrou, who won the Fastest Skater competition on Friday night, got the scoring started for the Central Division as he scored his first goal of the night.
Florida Panthers forward Jordan Huberdeau scored to tie the game at 1-1, but shortly after goals from Blackhawks forward Alex DeBrincat and Kadri made it a 3-1 lead for the Central Division.
Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews added a goal in the final minute of the first period and Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron added a goal in the first minute of the second half to tie the game at 3-3.
Back-to-back goals from Winnipeg Jets forward Kyle Conner and Kyrou made it a 5-3 lead for the Central.
The Atlantic Division cut the deficit to one goal twice, with goals from Buffalo Sabers defenseman Rasmus Dahlin and Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos.
But the Central Division fended off any run from the Atlantic, as they scored three of the final four goals, with Nashville Predators’ forward Roman Josi’s goal being the game-winner, to take the win.
DeBrincat and Pavelski each added goals late in the game to cushion the Central Division’s win.
An announced crowd of 17,419 came to T-Mobile Arena to watch the All-Star Game. Next year’s All-Star Game will be hosted by the Florida Panthers.