Scott Hartnell Is Not the All-Star Game's Mr. Irrelevant!

Scott Hartnell Is Not the All-Star Game's Mr. Irrelevant!

Well, Scott Hartnell may have been Bovada's odds-on favorite to be the last pick in the NHL All-Star Game draft, but in fact, he was selected a few rounds before Logan Couture took that honor (and the free car that came with it).

Hartnell will skate as part of Team Alfredsson, paired with Claude Giroux, the MVP-caliber forward that has been a huge part of Hartnell's career season to date. Giroux was selected in the fourth round, just before Kimmo Timonen went to Team Chara in the fifth. Hartnell sweated out the "last pick" with an esteemed group, but was selected by Daniel Alfredsson before four other All-Stars.

Watching Hartnell wait for his selection, laughing all the way, then putting on his All-Star jersey with legitimate pride, it was hard not to feel the exact same for him as a fan.

No one would have taken being the final pick better than Hartnell, and we all probably missed out on some great comedy in how he would have handled it. But Harts is having one hell of a season, and there was no joke involved in the fact that he was absolutely deserving of his acknowledgment as one of the league's best players on Thursday night.

Harts is often credited as an efficient pest, but this season, he's also been a clearly dangerous scorer and is often mentioned as one of the league's top power forwards. He has benefited from playing with Giroux, but the same is true in reverse.

As for G and Timonen, it was also great to see them standing among the elite of the elite. Giroux is as good as it gets, with room to get even better. Timonen drew the respect of the league's pre-eminent blueliner, and no one can argue he isn't one as well.

Rookies Sean Couturier and Matt Read are both on Team Alfredsson.

And, there's already been a Hartnell headline on Puck Daddy. It appears that, due to short commercial breaks, bathroom time was a premium on draft night. Perhaps due to their familiarity as teammates and good friends, Hartnell and Team Chara alternate captain Joffrey Lupul did some sword-fighting backstage. Not hard to imagine them having … never mind.

Complete draft proceedings…

Nerlens Noel on Sixers' frontcourt logjam: 'I don't see a way it can work'

Nerlens Noel on Sixers' frontcourt logjam: 'I don't see a way it can work'

CAMDEN, N.J. — Nerlens Noel is standing his ground.

After saying that the Sixers' entering the season with three starting-caliber centers (himself, Jahlil Okafor, Joel Embiid) "doesn't make sense," Noel didn't back down from his stance during the team's annual media day.  

"I don't see a way it can work," Noel said Monday. "It's just a logjam. You have three young, talented centers that can play 30-plus minutes a night." 

The Sixers attempted to play with two bigs in Noel and Okafor last season but had little success. Now that Embiid is finally healthy, the fit to the puzzle doesn't figure to get any better.

Reports swirled during the offseason that the Sixers were looking to trade either Noel or Okafor to add backcourt help to the woeful franchise, but nothing came to fruition.

"Things need to get situated," Noel said. "I think things obviously need to be moved around, someone needs to be moved around. It's just a tough situation. I can't really say too much because I have no say in the matter, so obviously that's for who can handle the situation in the right manner.

"I've gone through a whole lot. Probably the most, arguably, that any player has gone through in the NBA in losing. It's a tough situation to still be in. Year by year, to see things get more difficult to show your value. Year by year, it's always been something. It's really at a point where it's just a lot."

Bryan Colangelo said he understands Noel's viewpoint. However, the Sixers' president said he is in no rush to trade any of the centers and will wait the situation out.

"It’s not disappointing. It’s understandable," Colangelo said. "I think Nerlens actually did a pretty good job sizing up what we have, which is a lot of depth and a lot of talent at that position."

Despite each of the three centers being early in their career, Noel, who is in the final year of his rookie contract, doesn't want to hold off to see if the trio can actually mesh on the floor.

"I can't say I do really understand that (wait-and-see approach)," Noel said. "If you have a group of players, I just don't think it makes too much sense to just still come into the season with such a heavy lineup at the center position. I don't know what there is to wait and see."

Noel made sure to express that he has no issues with Okafor and Embiid and said they are some of his closest friends on the team. But when asked whether he was happy to be a Sixer, Noel deflected.

"I feel good," he said. "I'm all right, I'm in a good place right now."

Sure sounds like it.

Darren Sproles' TD from Wentz set to Sonic the Hedgehog music


Darren Sproles' TD from Wentz set to Sonic the Hedgehog music

You may fondly remember the time Darren Sproles took a punt return to the house last season and a wonderful Twitter user set the video to the Super Mario Bros.' star music, yes?

It was great.

Now that Sproles' put on the jets again yesterday in the Eagles win over the Steelers, the same @pacdude on Twitter has done it again.

This time it's the theme music from Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Please enjoy.