The 2022 NHL All-Star teams were unveiled on Thursday, showcasing the group of players that have been chosen to take their talents to Sin City in a few weeks' time for the league's marquee midseason event.
The problem, however, is that this year's list of All-Star appointees is rubbish, with countless star players being left off their respective divisional rosters in an act of confounding lunacy that, if I have anything to say about it, will not go unpunished.
So, who are the most egregious snubs? Let's find out.
Nazem Kadri - Colorado Avalanche
The guy is fourth in the NHL in points this season, scoring at a 130-point pace for one of the top teams in the league roughly halfway through the year.
What more do you want?
Nazem Kadri's play in 2021 has been, in no uncertain terms, otherworldly.
This is not merely because Kadri is currently on pace to more than double his previous career-high in points. No, it's because he's doing it in a remarkably sustainable way, with most metrics stating that Kadri's production is not the result of inflated shooting luck and instead is simply the product of playing well.
Really, really well.
Yes, I'm aware that the All-Star Game is a fan-centric event for which every team must have a representative. Save your "but actually!" tweets. I'm sure those participation medals will be fun ice breakers at every dinner party for years to come.
But I'm a red-blooded sports enthusiast, for Pete's sake! You can't force me to accept Nick Suzuki's 19 points in 36 games being deemed All-Star worthy over Kadri, who has well over double that in six fewer games, without a fight. And forcing Kadri to earn a spot with "Last Man In" votes? Despicable.
He's challenging for the Art Ross, guys! Send him to Vegas. What are we doing?
Igor Shesterkin - New York Rangers
Whereas Kadri, at the very least, has the chance to earn a "Last Man In" spot, Igor Shesterkin's complete erasure from this year's event is a travesty the likes of which human civilization has never seen.
And don't even try to tell me I'm being dramatic. This rage is completely appropriate.
The NHL is a league in which the reigning Vezina winner gets dealt for literally nothing, so I guess I shouldn't be too surprised about yet another top-tier goaltender's accolades being ignored. But Shesterkin has been the league's best netminder in 2021-22. Full stop. It's hard to argue anything else.
I'll present my case anyway, though.
Shesterkin leads the NHL in baseline save percentage and goals-against-average among netminders with over five starts this season with a ridiculous .939 and 1.99 on the year, respectively. His three shutouts are also the third most league-wide, the most recent of which coming just last night after Shesterkin tossed aside all 37 shots he faced in his first game back from COVID-19 protocol.
For the fancy stat crowd, Shesterkin's 20 goals-saved-above-average is just one behind fellow All-Star Jack Campbell's league-leading 21. His 67 goals-allowed-adjusted is the best in the NHL in that metric, while his 6.0 point-share ranks as the fifth-highest among all NHL netminders, despite Shesterkin having played only 22 games to this point.
Whichever way you slice it, this fella is an All-Star. Rectify this mistake immediately.
Brad Marchand - Boston Bruins
Do you have any idea how dire things need to get for me to advocate FOR Brad Marchand? That's how badly the NHL dropped the ball on this one.
In the words of legendary Evening News anchor Wes Mantooth, "I hate you, Ron Burgundy. But, gosh darn it, do I respect you."
Editors Note: aspects of the above quote have been censored in order to ensure this article remains suitable for all audiences.
At age 33, Marchand is on pace for the best season of his entire 13-year career. The slippery little weasel is scoring at a ridiculous 4.4 points-per-sixty-minutes at the moment, en route to a whopping 41 points in 29 games while he averages nearly 20 minutes of ice time per night on a Bruins team that happens to be riding an eight-game winning streak.
Again, I must ask: What more do you want?
While Marchand's counting stats are among the best in the league, his fancy stats are off the charts too, with Marchand currently rocking a 59 percent CF/60 at even strength while helping the Bruins to win 63.5 percent of the expected goals whenever he steps on the ice.
After a slow start, you really can't help but wonder just where the Bruins would be at this point without Marchand. And he's only getting better!
Look me in the eyes and tell me that Clayton Keller's 26 points in 34 games in the NHL's basement deserve an All-Star nod over Marchand. You can't! Even if it goes against every single fiber of my being.
You win this one, Brad. Don't get used to it.
William Nylander - Toronto Maple Leafs
It's not William Nylander's fault that his team has many good players from which to choose.
The 25-year-old can only control his own performance. And Nylander is playing the best hockey of his career at the moment, scoring at over a point-per-game clip with 36 in 35 games thus far while being on track to notch a personal-best 37 goals.
The fact of the matter is, Nylander has elevated himself in nearly every conceivable way this season. He's developed an underrated two-way element to his game thanks to a newfound role on the Leafs' penalty kill, asserted himself in individual board battles more than ever, and has helped his team win over 58 percent of the expected goals whenever he's been on the ice.
For years, Nylander has reigned as a fancy stats darling with decent counting stats production whose reputation for taking the odd game off here and there withheld him from entering the NHL's upper echelon. This season has brought something completely different.
Nylander is one of the league's best wingers. And that deserves to be recognized with a trip to Vegas.
Roman Josi could very likely win the Norris Trophy this season, which makes his exclusion from both the All-Star roster and the "Last Man In' voting downright absurd.
Josi is one of the small group of defenders to be scoring at over a point-per-game pace this season, with the 31-year-old having racked up a stellar 38 points in 36 games for the Predators thus far all while averaging nearly 25 minutes of ice time per game and taking on the top opposing competition.
For the third time, I must ask: WHAT MORE DO YOU WANT?!
Josi is having the type of season that GMs spend their entire careers hoping one of their own players will experience -- only to ultimately end in disappointment. Few defenders can balance offensive production and defensive stability that the Predators captain brings to the table, with Josi being a primary reason for why his team sits first in the Central Division standings.
If life were fair, Josi would be packing his bags for Vegas as we speak. Alas, it is not. And he will watch players far less successful than him step onto the All-Star stage.