MONTREAL - Alex Kovalev and Andrei Markov
will get to personally welcome Mike Komisarek and Carey Price
to the NHL All-Star club when Montreal hosts the league’s midseason classic later this month.
The four Habs elected as starters for the 57th annual NHL All-Star Game did so by averaging over 1.3 million apiece. This marks the first time since NHL fans first had their say in the starting lineup back in 1986 that the Canadiens boast more than one player on the ice for the first puck drop. On eight separate occasions, the Habs had previously managed to see one player earn his way onto an All-Star squad via fan balloting.
For Kovalev and Markov, this marks the second time each of them has gotten an invite from the fans. Poised to play in his third career All-Star Game, Kovalev had also been voted into the starting lineup back in 2003 while still with the Penguins. Markov’s election has made him the most popular defenseman in the Eastern Conference for the second year in a row.
The Canadiens' leader with 28 points, Kovalev is the second Habs forward to have ever earned a spot in the starting lineup, joining Mats Naslund who managed the feat back in 1988-89.
After fighting tooth and nail down to the final moments with Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, it was Carey Price
came out on top in the end. The young netminder becomes the second Canadiens goalie to ever be voted in, following in the footsteps of Patrick Roy, who turned the trick four straight years from 1990 to 1994.
Like Price, Komisarek will also be getting his first taste of All-Star action.Manny Almela is a writer for canadiens.com
Starting Lineups (with vote totals)
Sidney Crosby PIT 1,713,021
Evgeni Malkin PIT 1,585,936
Alexei Kovalev MTL 1,343,301
Andrei Markov MTL 1,443,091
Mike Komisarek MTL 1,373,628
Carey Price MTL 1,515,885
Patrick Kane CHI 917,551
Jonathan Toews CHI 809,599
Ryan Getzlaf ANA 716,569
Brian Campbell CHI 784,476
Scott Niedermayer ANA 637,316
Jean-Sebastien Giguere ANA 617,241