PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 22: Michael Leighton #49 of the Philadelphia Flyers takes a drink of water in the third period of Game Five of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Buffalo Sabres during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center on April 22, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Michael Leighton had a few good months in the NHL. He got a nice contract for pacing the Flyers all the way to the Stanley Cup Final in 2010, but for much of his career, he's been a mediocre, backup-level NHL player. On the flip side, however, he is a downright great AHL-level goaltender, and that's good news for the Adirondack Phantoms.
In fact, if you attend a home game in Glens Falls, Leighton is worshipped by those fans. He's a very, very good goalie. That's why he'll get the start on Friday night when the Phantoms return to Philly for an outdoor game against the Hershey Bears at Citizens Bank Park, and that's why Leighton was also the lone Phantom to be named an AHL All-Star today.
The AHL All-Star Game will be held at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City on Monday, January 30. The Skills Competition will be the night before, Sunday the 29th.
The amount of Phantoms players on the Flyers goes a long way to explaining why Leighton is the only one to be named an All-Star. Matt Read, Harry Zolnierczyk, Erik Gustafsson and Marc-Andre Bourdon are just a few guys who potentially could have made the All-Star team with full seasons in the AHL, but well.... they're in Philly instead.