NHL All-Star Game could be heading to Ottawa

DON BRENNAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:51 AM ET

Clearly, the stars are lining up for Ottawa.

The NHL all-stars.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman will join Senators owner Eugene Melnyk and team president Cyril Leeder to make a “major announcement” during a press conference Wednesday at Ottawa’s Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel, the club said in a release Monday.

There, it is expected to be confirmed that Ottawa will host the 2012 NHL all-star festivities and game, Jan. 26-29.

As initially reported by the Ottawa Sun’s Bruce Garrioch, the first NHL all-star game to be played in the nation’s capital would uphold a promise Melnyk was made for an all-star weekend when Ottawa hosted the 2008 draft.

The 2012 game would also coincide with the Senators’ 20th anniversary back in the league.

The Senators were among the 25 teams to bid for the 2011-2012 games. They made their bid with Noel Buckley, president and CEO of Ottawa Tourism, and in conjunction with the completion of a new downtown convention centre with the required 200,000 sq. ft. of floor space needed for the league to hold all-star festivities.

The all-star weekend, which includes a rookie game and skills competition on the Saturday and the game on Sunday afternoon, is estimated to have a $30-million economic impact to the host city.

Ottawa city council has pledged $200,000 in funding if the all-star weekend bid is successful.


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