Earlier in the season, when the initial all-star ballots came out, John Tortorella said something really interesting in regards to Dan Girardi not being included. He called the league “ass-backwards” when asked about the snub. Later Girardi was added to the All-Star roster, and Torts had this to say:
“I think sometimes our league forgets about people like that. That restores a little faith for me, that the league stepped up and when it was clear it was deserved, and gave it to him. It’s not just pedigree, it’s what he’s done on the ice.”
Torts’ point, in essence, was that Girardi wasn’t given consideration because he isn’t a high-pedigree guy. Girardi was undrafted, played a couple AHL years, took advantage of a chance at a roster spot, and finally developed into one of the league’s best d-men. But, come all-star time, people focused on what Girardi was expected to be (a guy with no possible future in the NHL) instead of what he has become (one of the best shutdown d-men in the league). There’s a reason “You only get one chance to make a first impression” is a phrase you hear constantly: most people won’t be able to adjust their thinking about someone or something if they have a negative initial perception.