There is no doubt that the NHL is riding a hot streak as they head into the All-Star break. The league continues to see ratings increase on both Versus and NBC.

We are all aware of the unprecedented success of HBO's recent sports-reality show, "24/7 Penguins/Capitals: Road to the NHL Winter Classic." That set up the highest rated Winter Classic of the game's brief four-year history with the Caps beating the Penguins 3-1 after weather moved the game to a prime-time start on New Year's night.

On Friday, Versus will be front and center in Raleigh for the 2010-2011 NHL All Star weekend. The much-anticipated All-Star Player Fantasy Draft starts at 8 p.m., then the Super Skills competition at 7 p.m. Saturday, and finally the 58th annual NHL All-Star Game at 4 p.m. Sunday.

In my opinion, the best play-by-play man in the business, Mike "Doc" Emrick, will be joined by his entertaining color analyst Eddie Olczyk. They will handle all the weekend action.

I spoke to Doc about the weekend and what we can expect.

On the All-Star draft » Eric Staal of the Hurricanes and Nicklas Lidstrom of the Red Wings have been named team captains, and boy I bet our ratings on Friday night when they each pick their teams will be awesome. I mean, who will take Sid Crosby? Who will take Alex Ovechkin? Will, say, Alex end up playing on a team against Mike Green? I really think it is the most fun and unique idea for an All-Star game that I have seen.

On the skills competition » My favorite thing to see is the hardest shot. I mean the guys just stand there and let it rip. No skating up for speed, just standing there and hitting the puck as hard as you can.

On the struggles of the Caps » Look, they are an elite team in the NHL and once they get Ovi going and find a goalkeeper who can stay healthy they will be fine. The Caps are still a threat for the Stanley Cup. They will be fine. When the playoffs come, the cream will rise to the top.

Examiner columnist Jim Williams is a seven-time Emmy Award-winning TV producer, director and writer. Check out his blog, Watch this!