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by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

Voting for All-Star Game in St. Paul to kick-off Nov. 1

Jeff O'Neill
Jeff O’Neill, 27, made his All-Star debut last season at the 2002 All-Star Game in Sunrise, Fla.

RALEIGH, N.C. (Oct. 30, 2003) – The National Hockey league today announced the ballots for the 2004 NHL All-Star Game which will be held Feb. 8 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. Hurricanes right wing Jeff O’Neill, centers Ron Francis and Rod Brind’Amour and defenseman Danny Markov are listed on the ballot for the Eastern Conference All-Stars. Fans can vote for other Hurricanes by writing-in their names. Voting begins Nov. 1.

Fans around the world can vote to select the starting lineups for the Eastern and Western Conference All-Star Teams for the 2004 NHL All-Star Game by participating in the Best Buy/NHL All-Star Fan Balloting Program presented by PlayStation 2. Voting will be conducted through electronic ballots on the League’s website (, through broadband kiosks at 580 Best Buy locations in the United States, via paper ballots at all 30 NHL arenas and, for the first time, via Nextel phones in the U.S.

Jeff O’Neill, 27, made his All-Star debut last season at the 2002 All-Star Game in Sunrise, Fla. O’Neill is currently in his ninth NHL season and is one of only 12 players who have scored at least 30 goals per season over the past three seasons. O’Neill has six points (1g, 5a) in Carolina’s first eight games this season. He led the Hurricanes in scoring in 2002-03 with 61 points (30g, 31a) and has 388 career points (185g, 203a) in 614 games.

Ron Francis, 40, has been to the All-Star Game four times as a member of the Hurricanes franchise. He ranks second in NHL history in assists (1,223), fifth all-time in points (1,760) and third all-time in games played (1,659). Francis is the franchise’s all-time leader in games played (1,126), goals (373), assists (774) and points (1,147). The captain of the Hurricanes, Francis was Carolina’s second-leading scorer in 2002-03 with 57 points (22g, 35a).

Rod Brind’Amour, 33, was third on the team in scoring last season despite missing 34 games because of a hand injury. Brind’Amour played in the 1992 NHL All-Star Game while still a member of the Philadelphia Flyers and has totaled 876 points (340g, 536a) in 1,039 career NHL games. Brind’Amour is currently the league leader in face-off percentage (67.1%) and leads all Hurricanes forwards in ice-time this season (22:36 per game).

Danny Markov, 27, is currently fourth in the NHL in ice time at 26:13 and is third on the team in plus/minus with a plus-4. Markov represented Russia at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City and has 105 points (20g, 85a) in 344 career NHL games. Acquired June 21 along with a draft pick in exchange for David Tanabe and Igor Knyazev, Markov has yet to play in an NHL All-Star Game.

The Hurricanes face-off against the NY Rangers tonight at Madison Square Garden at 7 p.m. (Fox Sports Net, Hurricanes Radio Network). Following the game, Carolina travels to Tampa to take on the division-leading Lightning on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. (Fox Sports Net, Hurricanes Radio Network). Carolina’s next home game is Sunday when the Hurricanes host Toronto at 6 p.m. at the RBC Center. Individual game tickets for October and November games are available at the Dodge Box Office at the RBC Center, at all TicketMaster locations or by calling TicketMaster at 919-834-4000.

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