The 2020 NHL All-Star Game rosters are nearly complete, with one spot remaining on each division's team.
Colorado Avalanche rookie defenseman Cale Makar can join Nathan MacKinnon at the league's mid-season classic as part of the "Last Men In" ballot. MacKinnon was already voted the Central Division's captain for the second straight season.
Makar ranks second on the Avs with 29 points (eight goals, 21 assists) through 31 contests this season. Despite missing eight games with an upper-body injury, his 29 points are second among all rookies and eighth among all league defensemen. At the time of his injury, he was first among rookies and second among all NHL defensemen in scoring with 28 points (eight goals, 20 assists).
The Calgary, Alberta, native is tied for the rookie lead with three game-winning goals, which also ties the Avalanche/Nordiques franchise record for a rookie defender set by Aaron Miller in 1996-97. His eight goals are the third-most in a single-season by a Colorado/Quebec rookie D.
Video: COL@WPG: Makar dangles past defender and scores
Makar was named the league's Rookie of the Month for November after he produced 16 points (seven goals, nine assists), the most by a rookie blueliner in any month since Alexei Zhitnik registered 19 in March 1993 with the Los Angeles Kings.
The 21-year-old recorded an assist in his return from injury on Dec. 27, his 29th point of the season. He became the fifth defenseman in NHL history to register 29 or more points in his first 30 regular-season contests, joining Harry Cameron (38 from 1917-18 to 1918-19), Larry Murphy (32 in 1980-81), Mark Howe (29 in 1979-80) and Brian Leetch (29 from 1987-88 too 1988-89).
Makar's 26 points through his first 26 games were the fourth-most ever by a defenseman behind Cameron (36) from 1917-19 with the Toronto Arenas, Murphy (29) in 1980-81 and Hap Day (27) in 1924-25 with the Toronto St. Pats. Only two other rookie defensemen in the NHL's expansion era (since 1967-68) scored at least eight goals through the first 25 games of their NHL career: Brad Maxwell (eight) in 1977-78 with Minnesota and Barry Beck (11) in 1977-78 with the Colorado Rockies.
Video: CBJ@COL: Makar roofs wrist shot past Korpisalo
MacKinnon was named the Central Division's captain on Dec. 21 via a fan vote. It will be his fourth straight appearance at the All-Star Game and the second consecutive season that he will serve as a captain at the event.
The "Last Men In" voting opens on Wednesday at 10 a.m. MT and closes at 9:59 p.m. MT on Friday, Jan. 10. It is the second year that the NHL has allowed fans to select the final player for each division. Avs captain Gabriel Landeskog was selected to participate in the 2019 All-Star Game through the "Last Man In" voting last season.
Fans will be allowed to select as few as one player and a maximum of four per ballot. The highest number of ballots cast per 24-hour period for each fan is 10.
The 2020 Honda NHL All-Star Game will be held on Saturday, Jan. 25, at Enterprise Center in St. Louis, Missouri (6 p.m. MT, NBC). The players who are named to the rosters will also compete in the NHL All-Star Skills event the night before on Friday, Jan. 24 (6 p.m. MT, NBCSN).