SUN Hockey Pool

Family fun for bench boss

BRUCE GARRIOCH -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:34 AM ET

ATLANTA -- It was take your daughters to work day for John Paddock.

The Senators coach had some company behind the Eastern Conference bench last night, as he was joined by three of his four daughters -- Alysa, Anna and Sally -- for his debut in the NHL all-star game at Philips Arena.

After checking with NHL officials to make sure it was okay for the girls to join him, Alysa stood with Paddock in the first, Anna took her turn in the second and Sally was there when Paddock really had to do some coaching in the East's 8-7 victory over the Western Conference.

"For some of us, you don't get opportunities like this very often and they can come only once," said Paddock. "They were all able to be here. I just thought it would be neat to be able to do something like this and the NHL had no problem with it. It was just a real fun thing to have them there."

While Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson only brought a close friend from Sweden to his sixth all-star game, centre Jason Spezza had his whole family and his girlfriend Jennifer Snell in town. He said he is going to remember this night for a long time.

"The best memory of the weekend? The game," said Spezza. "Just being around the guys; in here when we're getting ready for the game and the amount of fun that we had. It's nice to have the family here with me. This is a neat experience for them."

Of course, Spezza, who had two assists, didn't mind playing with Alex Ovechkin and Martin St. Louis all night either.

"It was fun to play with different guys," said Spezza with a smile. "(St. Louis) can move the puck pretty well also. Ovechkin likes to shoot the puck, so I tried to get him the puck as well. We connected on a couple and we probably could have had a couple of more as well."

NICE GIFT: All-star MVP Eric Staal said he's likely going to give the SUV he won to his parents Henry and Linda. "I was saying to the guys on the ice if I do give it to my parents it would sure be a favourite for the family for the next little while," said Staal. "It's a neat feeling (to win). I was a little surprised, but I'll take the honour. It was a great game and a lot of fun."


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