All-Star Game will have 3-on-3 tourney

NEW YORK — The NHL will play a 3-on-3 All-Star tournament instead of a traditional All-Star Game.

The league and the players union announced the format change Wednesday for the Jan. 31 event in Nashville.

Players will represent the Pacific, Central, Atlantic and Metropolitan divisions in the $1 million winner-take-all tournament that will have three 20-minute games. The Central will open against the Pacific, and the Atlantic will face the Metropolitan in the semifinals, with the winners advancing to the championship game.

Toronto coach Mike Babcock welcomed the move. "The All-Star Game's fantastic for those who attend it," he said. "As far as being a spectator sport on TV, it sure hasn't been that."

But Babcock's goalie, James Reimer, wasn't as positive.

"It's going to be awful, probably," he said. "I think the eight goalies that get picked, it's going to be like a death sentence."


•JETS END LONG SKID: Mark Scheifele and Drew Stafford each had two goals and an assist as the Jets beat the Vancouver 4-1 in Winnipeg to end a six-game losing streak. Mathieu Perreault had three assists and Ondrej Pavelec made 29 saves for the Jets.

•CAPITALS TOP WINGS IN OT: Evgeny Kuznetsov scored 45 seconds into overtime to lift the Capitals to a 2-1 victory over the Red Wings in Detroit. Alex Ovechkin was held without a goal for the fourth straight game and remained tied with Sergei Fedorov for the NHL's career lead among Russian players.

•NOTES: Bert Olmstead, the Hall of Fame left winger who played on five Stanley Cup championships teams during his 14-year NHL career, died Monday. He was 89. … Defenseman Travis Hamonic requested a trade from the Islanders before the start of this season and the teams has been attempting to accommodate his request. … The Kings suspended minor league goalie Patrik Bartosak without pay after reports surfaced that he is facing 12 charges related to a domestic violence case in Manchester, N.H.