Flyers' Briere will get to be all-star after all

Posted: January 20, 2011

Flyers center Danny Briere is no longer out of the all-star mix.

Bypassed by the NHL when it named 36 all-stars last week, Briere was added Wednesday to replace Calgary's Jarome Iginla, who will miss the game for personal reasons.

Briere said he felt he was originally overlooked because of "politics" but added that he held no grudge - and that he was thrilled to be added to the team because he can bring his three boys to the Jan. 30 game in Raleigh, N.C.

"I'm really excited for the chance to take my kids to it," said Briere, whose sons are 9, 11, and 12. "They're at a prime age for these types of things. I know they're going to be very excited about it. They all play hockey and obviously the All-Star Game is a big thing for them.

"I think that's probably the biggest thrill for me - having the chance to share it with them."

Briere, 33, entered Wednesday tied for sixth in the NHL with 24 goals.

"He absolutely deserves to be there," said coach Peter Laviolette, who will serve as co-coach of one of the all-star teams.

Briere, the MVP of the 2007 All-Star Game, and his Haddonfield housemate, Claude Giroux, are the Flyers' lone all-stars.

"It's not just about us; it's about our whole team and coaching staff helping us to get to where we are," Briere said.

The Flyers (30-11-5), who reached 30 wins in the shortest time since 1986-87, are atop the NHL with 65 points.

"I've said it all along, with the season that we've been having - not just me or Claude - there are lots of guys that deserve to go," said Briere, who leads the Flyers in goals and points (41). "It's a pretty big honor, and when you're on a winning team, it makes it even more special. To have a chance to go, it makes you appreciate the year even more."

The all-star teams will be chosen by captains Eric Staal and Nicklas Lidstrom during a Jan. 28 draft.

"Now that I'm the add-on, I guess I fall in line for being the last pick," Briere said with a smile.

Briere said the new format for selecting the teams was exciting. "Unless I'm the last guy picked, it should be fun," he said.

Going to the All-Star Game with Giroux is "another cool thing . . . living together here and sharing the experience together," Briere said.

"It's pretty special," Giroux said.

The fact that the all-star team doesn't have many Flyers "shows we're not relying on one or two guys," Briere said. "It's a team thing. That's the reason we're at the top. We don't have a [Sidney] Crosby or [Alex] Ovechkin on our team, but we come at you in different ways."

General manager Paul Holmgren said it didn't bother him that the Flyers originally had just one all-star. It gave the Flyers an us-against-the-league mentality.

"I kind of like being the underdog," Holmgren said.

Before being added, the recently divorced Briere had planned to be with his boys at a hockey tournament in Florida during the all-star break. There will be some youth hockey coaches who "won't be too happy" because his sons will miss their games, he said.

Briere has been on one other all-star team in his 13-year career. He scored a goal and had four assists in the 2007 All-Star Game in Dallas. He won a Dodge Nitro SUV, which he gave to his sister.

It is the only five-point game in his career.

Briere said his sons were too young to attend that 2007 game. "I always promised them that the next time I would go, they would be there," he said. "I'm getting older, and how many chances am I going to have to go back and share that with them? So that's why I'm kind of excited about it."


Contact staff writer Sam Carchidi at 215-854-5181

or scarchidi@phillynews.com.

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