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Byline: Steve Gorten
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. _ Remember last year's All-Star Game? Columbus forward Rick Nash scored just 12 seconds into the game _ setting an All-Star Game record for quickest goal _ and finished with a hat trick in an 8-7 loss to the Eastern Conference. Carolina's Eric Staal was named Most Valuable Player that night. It wasn't a bad choice, but it was another example of how often Nash is overlooked.
His biggest flaw, perhaps, is that he's the best player on one of the NHL's worst teams this decade. The Blue Jackets have not made the playoffs in their seven seasons of existence, tied with the Panthers for the longest current streak in the league. Nash, meanwhile, keeps thriving in …