A look back at NY Islanders defenseman named to the All-Star Game the last 20 years

2022 Honda NHL All-Star Game
2022 Honda NHL All-Star Game / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
4 of 5

Update: Mathew Barzal was named the Islanders All-Star. D Noah Dobson can be selected through the fan vote

The National Hockey League is set to announce the 32 initial players to participate at the 2024 All-Star Game in Toronto next month. After the announcement, another fan vote will be held from Jan. 13-18 to select 12 additional participants.

The New York Islanders have several worthy candidates this season, including two-time All-Star Mathew Barzal, who leads the team with 37 points, and Brock Nelson, the team's leading scorer. Nelson, who won the accuracy competition last year, has 17 goals this season. Another All-Star last year, Bo Horvat, has 14 goals and 21 assists in his first full Islanders season.

Dec 31, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  New York Islanders defenseman Noah Dobson (8) takes
Dec 31, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Noah Dobson (8) takes / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

However, it would be an unfortunate if Noah Dobson wasn't named an All-Star. The young defenseman, who turns 24 on Jan. 7, leads the team with 30 assists and, more impressively, has turned into a workhorse with the team missing defenseman Adam Pelech and Ryan Pulock for an extended period of time. Dobson, who has been quarterbacking the team's much-improved power play, is averaging 25:53 TOI, second in the league only to the King's Drew Doughty, and has surpassed the 25-minute mark in 18 straight games.

Here is a look at past Islanders defensemen to appear in the All-Star Game over the last 20 years.

Adam Pelech - 2022

In a bit of surprise, Pelech was selected as the Islanders representative for the 2022 All-Star Game in Las Vegas. It's not that Pelech wasn't deserving; he had established himself as a top pair defenseman after the Islanders deep run to the 2021 Stanley Cup Semi-Finals. However, it's not often that the NHL rewards a defensive defenseman with an invitation to the festivities that features a skills competition and 3-on-3 game action.

The 27-year-old had inked an eight-year, $46 million extension prior to the season to stay with the team and presumably alongside defense partner Ryan Pulock, who also signed an eight-year extension during the summer.

“It was definitely a huge surprise at first,” said Pelech after the announcement. “I’m really looking forward to it. As for the part I’m most looking forward to, I guess just really the whole experience. I think it’s going to be pretty cool to be part of that weekend. The All-Star weekend was definitely something I would watch when I was growing up and always looked forward to seeing.”

Mark Streit - 2009

New York Islanders captain, D Mark Streit returned to Montreal as an All-Star in 2009. Streit signed with the Islanders after spending the previous three seasons with the Canadiens. When he was selected to represent his old team in his new city, the Islanders under head coach Scott Gordon were the worst team in the league and it would lead to them selecting first overall in the June draft.

Prior to playing with Montreal, Streit had played eight professional seasons in his native Switzerland. “I proved I belonged and can play defense in this league,” said Streit. “So I’m excited.”

Streit earned two assists in a 12-11 Eastern Conference shootout win, earning points on goals scored by Zach Parise and Martin St. Louis. However, perhaps his most memorable moment came during the previous night's skills competition when he wiped on league signage located on the ice after being stopped in the breakaway competition.

Adrian Aucoin - 2004

Aucoin put up the best and most consistent offensive year of his career during the 2003-04 season, including a career-high 33 assists and 44 points, earning him a selection to his only All-Star appearance in 2004. Aucoin, who finished fifth in Norris Trophy voting in 2003-04, scored 33 goals and 80 assists in 235 career games on Long Island.

Aucoin scored a goal in the Eastern Conference's 6-4 win at the low-scoring affair in Minnesota and also made his presence felt at the skils competition the prior night. Aucoin shared a victory in the hardest shot competition with Sheldon Souray of the Montreal Canadiens with a 102.2 mph blast and scored the first goal of the game in a 6–4 win over the Western Conference.

Roman Hamrlik - 2003

The former No. 1 overall pick represented the Islanders at the 2003 All-Star Game, assisting on a goal from Dany Heatley to open the scoring for the Eastern Conference. It was the third All-Star selection for the Czech-born defenseman, who was the lone Islander selected that year after Mark Parrish and Alexei Yashin represented the team the prior year.

New York Islanders v Washington Capitals
New York Islanders v Washington Capitals / Mitchell Layton/GettyImages

"I think I can still play better," Hamrlik said in the New York Times. "For me, it's more important to bring my `A' game — every night, every shift, every period." Hamrlik represented the Eastern Conference after previously being part of the North America vs. The World format the NHL adapted, but ended after the prior season. Hamrlik skated in 300 games for the Islanders, scoring 43 goals and 110 assists for 153 points.