Springfield, MA (Sports Network) - The American Hockey League on Tuesday selected St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador to host its 2014 All-Star festivities, which will feature a new wrinkle.
In the premier contest, scheduled for Feb. 12 at Mile One Centre, a team of AHL stars will square off against Farjestad BK, a team from Sweden's Elite League. It will mark the first time a Swedish team has competed against one in North America.
Farjestad's CEO is former NHLer Hakan Loob, who played for the Calgary Flames from 1983-89, winning a Stanley Cup in his final season there before returning to Farjestad to finish his career.
"I would like to thank Farjestad, the Swedish Hockey League and the St. John's IceCaps for their commitment to making this very special opportunity a reality," AHL president David Andrews said. "The city and fans of St. John's have wholly embraced the IceCaps since our league returned to Newfoundland and Labrador, and this historic and memorable event is an excellent way for us to showcase our brightest stars to what will truly be an international audience."
The AHL revived its All-Star celebration in 1995, and in previous incarnations, pitted Canadian stars against Americans and Canadian stars against the combined forces of the top U.S. and World players, before switching to a basic East-West competition in 2011.
"The SHL is proud to be a part of this event and it is a positive step in the direction our league is heading," said Jorgen Lindgren, CEO of the Swedish Hockey League. "Most importantly, we are proud to give North American hockey fans a unique sports experience."