Did Rick DiPietro also drive the zamboni between periods Sunday night? Because he did just about everything else over All-Star weekend in Atlanta.
DiPietro provided in-game television commentary for both Sunday's All-Star game and Saturday's skills competition, did not allow a goal Saturday while scoring two of his own, and allowed only one goal as the Eastern Conference starter to help stake the East to a 5-1 win en route to an 8-7 victor over the West.
D.P. stopped all but one of the West's 16 shots on goal in the first period, and that one should have an asterisk on it. Rick Nash scored the first of his three goals just 12 seconds into the game, while DiPietro was talking to play-by-play man Mike Emrick. Otherwise, DiPietro was perfect. Read all about DiPietro's wild weekend here.
While starting in the All-Star game and participating in the skills competition are deserving honors, they don't count toward anything, so you're always wary of someone getting hurt in these exhibitions. Sure enough, DiPietro suffered an apparent hip injury stopping Marian Gaborik on Saturday, but he said afterward that he would plan Sunday, and he did. Whew!
Newsday's Greg Logan calls Richard Park the Isles' 'unsung hero,' and I've felt all season that other than DiPietro, Park is this team's MVP. He's responded in every role Ted Nolan has put him in (now playing with Mike Comrie and Bill Guerin) and is one of the team's most clutch players.