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Crosby maintains big lead among Eastern Conference all-star vote-getters @NHLdotcom

NEW YORK - Pittsburgh Penguins centre Sidney Crosby has maintained his lead among Eastern Conference players in fan voting for the NHL all-star game.

Crosby had received 177,873 votes in the all-digital voting program through Monday, the league announced Tuesday. He was well ahead of Montreal Canadiens defenceman Andrei Markov, who leads all blue-liners with 115,007 votes. Boston Bruins defenceman Zdeno Chara was third with 84,111 votes.

Crosby, Daniel Alfredsson of the Ottawa Senators (80,211) and Vincent Lecavalier (73,743) of the Tampa Bay Lightning were the leading vote-getters at forward. Markov and Chara led all defencemen and Cristobal Huet of the Montreal Canadiens was tops among goaltenders (64,351).

The updated Western Conference voting totals were scheduled to be released Wednesday.

More than 4.17 million votes have been cast so far. Voting will determine the starting lineups for the Jan. 27 game in Atlanta.

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