NEW YORK - Six players from the All-Star host Montreal Canadiens -- goaltender Carey Price, defensemen Andrei Markov and Mike Komisarek plus forwards Saku Koivu, Alex Kovalev and Alex Tanguay -- have been named to the ballot in XM/NHL All-Star Fan Balloting presented by 2K Sports. The Canadiens' ballot representation is tied with the defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings for the most among NHL clubs.
The Canadiens, who captured the Eastern Conference regular-season championship in 2007-08 and have compiled a searing 8-1-1 start to this season, will host the 2009 NHL All-Star festivities in January as part of their year-long Centennial celebration.
The 104-player ballot features 23 players under the age of 25. Ten of those players are making their first career appearance on the ballot: Dustin Brown, Los Angeles (24); Brent Burns, Minnesota, (23); Mike Green (23) and Alexander Semin (24), Washington; Patrick Kane (19) and Jonathan Toews (20), Chicago; Zach Parise, New Jersey, (24); Price, Montreal, (21); Mike Richards, Philadelphia, (23) and Shea Weber, Nashville, (23).
Voting opens Nov. 12.
In a first for all major professional sports leagues, the NHL will provide real-time All-Star fan balloting results online at NHL.com. From Nov. 12 through Jan. 2, NHL fans will be able to vote as often as they like to select the starting lineups for the 2009 NHL All-Star Game in Montreal. Fans around the world can vote online via interactive English and French ballots at Vote.NHL.com. Those in the U.S. and Canada also will be able to cast their votes via text message using any wireless carrier. During the voting period, real-time results will be available exclusively on Vote.NHL.com/results. This marks the third consecutive year the All-Star Balloting process is entirely digital.
Fans can vote for up to six Eastern Conference players and six Western Conference players: three forwards, two defensemen and one goaltender. For the first time, fans will be permitted to select as few as one player -- a balloted player or write-in -- per online ballot at Vote.NHL.com or via text message. The three forwards, two defensemen and one goaltender from each Conference receiving the most votes will comprise the starting lineups. Each of the 30 NHL clubs has at least two representatives on the ballot.
The NHL will promote XM NHL All-Star Fan Balloting presented by 2K Sports across its TV, print, online and wireless advertising platforms. Promotional support will be provided by the NHL Network, NHL Radio and broadcast partners VERSUS (U.S.), CBC (Canada) and RDS (Canada). Promotional materials for the campaign, in both English and French, will launch on Wednesday, Nov. 12, the first day of balloting.