They say imitation is the highest form of flattery. That may well be the case, but imitation fell flat this weekend when used to inject excitement into the NHL all-star festivities.
NHL honchos valiantly attempted to model a portion of the skills competition around the NBA's ultra successful slam-dunk competition.
Sadly, it just didn't work.
This leads me to ask: Did no one see the fatal flaw? Hello, goalie!?
It was painfully obvious the NHL is not the NBA.
Full points to the league for giving it the old college try in an attempt to improve what is fast becoming an obsolete break in regular-season play.
There was a time when the NHL's all-star weekend was a big deal to all sports fans, yours truly included. It may seem like an eternity ago, but it wasn't. (Notably, during the Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux era.
This pair of superstars knew how to sell it -- competitors coming together to put on a yearly spectacle with the rest of the league in awe.
Yes, it would have been a bigger deal had Sidney Crosby been on the ice this year rather than icing his ankle, but I'm not convinced one player would have made enough of a difference to save the event.
Rather than looking at ways to change the games that count, there should be more time spent on changing this game -- an attempt to bring in new fans who want a taste of the best of the best.
All-star weekend proved, yet again, the time has come for a complete revamp rather than a lot of re-tooling and Band-Aids.
-- Jody Vance is a longtime sportscaster and personality with Leafs TV. Her column appears Tuesdays and Thursdays in 24 hours.