Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings was picked for a 10th NHL all-star game, but won't be attending in Montreal. ((Ronald Martinez/Getty Images))

It's that time of year again, when the best NHL players gather for an exhibition of skill and fun ... and other seemingly able-bodied players develop mysterious "injuries" in the run up to the all-star game and beg off.

The NHL evidently implemented a rule beginning last year designed to deal with the issue and on Fridaydecided to punish Nicklas Lidstrom and Pavel Datsyuk of the Detroit Red Wings for missing the all-star contest in Montreal without being absent from any of the other own club's regular season games leading up to Sunday's game. For that, the league has decided they must sit for one game when play resumes next week.

Was the NHL correct in penalizing the players or should the game be a choice and not a mandatory duty? Should it matter how many times a player has represented at the all-star affair, i.e. is it fair that journeymen get every all-star break off and stars can't miss the occasional year? Should teams be able to get a non-injury exemption ahead of time for one of their veterans? Is the format of the all-star game contributing to the pullout issue or would it happen regardless? Is this much ado about nothing?

Let us know your suggestions on how the league should handle this issue. Have your say!