SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Todd Nelson of the Hershey Bears, Greg Moore of the Toronto Marlies, Neil Graham of the Texas Stars and Mitch Love of the Calgary Wranglers have clinched the honor of coaching at the 2023 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Bell in collaboration with Manulife Bank, to be held February 5-6 in Laval, Que.
The Bears, Marlies, Stars and Wranglers will all own the best record in their respective divisions as of the pre-determined deadline, the end of play today, January 1.
Todd Nelson will guide the Atlantic Division All-Star team in his first season as the Bears’ head coach, having led Hershey to a record of 22-7-2-1 (47 points, .734). One of three people ever to win the Calder Cup as a player, as an assistant coach and as a head coach, Nelson, 53, will be making his third appearance behind the bench at the AHL All-Star Classic (2012, 2017).
Named head coach of the Marlies on Dec. 1, 2019, Greg Moore will lead the North Division thanks to Toronto’s 19-9-1-1 record (40 pts., .667) so far in 2022-23. The 38-year-old Moore, who was an AHL All-Star in 2008, will join Peter Laviolette and John Stevens as the only people to participate in AHL All-Star Classics as both a player and a head coach.
Neil Graham heads to his first AHL All-Star Classic in his fourth season as head coach of the Stars, who sit atop the Central Division with a record of 19-7-3-2 (43 pts., .694). Graham, 37, took over the Texas bench on Dec. 10, 2019, after Derek Laxdal was promoted to Dallas, and guided the Stars to an appearance in the Calder Cup Playoffs in 2022.
Mitch Love will coach the Pacific Division All-Star team thanks to Calgary’s league-best 21-7-1-0 record (43 pts., .741). Last season, Love earned the Louis A.R. Pieri Award as the AHL’s outstanding coach after guiding the Stockton Heat to the best record ever by a Calgary Flames AHL affiliate. Love, 38, will be making his first AHL All-Star Classic appearance.
The AHL’s All-Stars will be divided into four teams, one representing each of the league’s four divisions, for the 2023 Mise-o-jeu AHL All-Star Challenge on Monday, Feb. 6. The teams will participate in a round-robin 3-on-3 tournament featuring six games of 10 minutes each. The two teams with the best records at the end of the round-robin will face off for the championship, a six-minute game also played at 3-on-3.
The 2023 Rona AHL All-Star Skills Competition on Sunday, Feb. 5, will pit the All-Stars from the two Eastern Conference divisions against those from the two Western Conference divisions in seven skills events.
Tickets for the 2023 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Bell in collaboration with Manulife Bank, which include admission to both the Skills Competition and the Challenge, start at only $39 and are available now by visiting rocketlaval.com.
The 2023 AHL All-Star Classic will feature the top young talent in the American Hockey League: since 1995, more than 94 percent of All-Star Classic participants have gone on to compete in the National Hockey League, including Cam Atkinson, Drake Batherson, Patrice Bergeron, Jordan Binnington, Jack Campbell, John Carlson, Logan Couture, Thatcher Demko, Denis Gurianov, Connor Hellebuyck, Tristan Jarry, Kaapo Kahkonen, Jordan Kyrou, Jonathan Marchessault, Jacob Markstrom, Brandon Montour, William Nylander, Kyle Palmieri, Mikko Rantanen, Dylan Strome, Linus Ullmark, Vitek Vanecek and Mats Zuccarello.
In operation since 1936, the American Hockey League serves as the top development league for the players, coaches, managers, executives, broadcasters and staff of all 32 National Hockey League teams. Nearly 90 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and more than 100 honored members of the Hockey Hall of Fame spent time in the AHL in their careers.