Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos has been rewarded for his hot start this season with an extra home game.
Stamkos was voted by NHL fans as captain of the Atlantic Division team for the 2018 Honda NHL All-Star Game, which will be held at Amalie Arena in Tampa on Jan. 28 (3:30 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVA Sports).
Center Connor McDavid of the Edmonton Oilers (Pacific Division), defenseman P.K. Subban of the Nashville Predators (Central) and forward Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals (Metropolitan) were also voted as captains for the game.
Stamkos had 49 points (17 goals, 32 assists) in 39 games entering Thursday and was tied for third in NHL scoring with John Tavares of the New York Islanders. Stamkos' linemate, Nikita Kucherov, leads the League with 56 points (25 goals, 31 assists) in 39 games.
"When we heard that the All-Star Game was going to be in Tampa, obviously we wanted to make sure we got off to a good start as a team to give our players a chance to have a special event like that in front of our home fans," Stamkos said in Montreal on Thursday.
"It's going to be fun either way," Stamkos said. "Any time you can have the honor of representing your team at the All-Star Game it's been a ton of fun and extra special for the event to be hosted in our home city. So it's going to be a great event, I know Tampa has been working really hard to host that event and it should be a lot of fun."
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McDavid, last season's winner of the Hart Trophy, Art Ross Trophy and Ted Lindsay Award, said he was honored to be chosen as Pacific Division captain for a second straight season.
"It's special," McDavid, who entered Thursday with 45 points (14 goals, 31 assists) in 40 games, ninth in NHL scoring, said before the Oilers hosted the Anaheim Ducks. "It definitely means a lot to me. The fans, not only of Edmonton but of the League … this means a lot to me. And to be able to go back and go back as captain of the Pacific, that's definitely special."
Subban was chosen for the All-Star Game for the third straight season and will be captain of the Central Division for the second straight year.
"It's great when fans recognize you," he said before the Predators played at the Arizona Coyotes. "If it's not me, it's someone else that gets recognized and I'm sure that they would be very happy with the honor. At the end of the day, I just try to do my job and perform well.
"The first couple years of my career in the League I wasn't recognized as an All-Star, so being recognized, I'm really happy about it."
Enjoying all events at All-Star Weekend is a priority, said Subban, who entered Thursday with 29 points (nine goals, 20 assists) in 39 games.
"I just like to enjoy it with family and friends," he said. "That's what it's there for, and you try to put on a show for the fans when you're out there. I just take it in because it's not every year that you're selected to be an All-Star, so if you're lucky enough, when you're there, you just try to enjoy it."
Ovechkin, who has a League-leading 26 goals, said he's honored to be named to the All-Star Game for the ninth time in his NHL career.
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"It's a huge honor to be an all-star, being able to stay on the same level as many years as I've played," Ovechkin said.
The All-Star Game will feature teams from each of the four divisions in a 3-on-3 tournament with 20-minute games in the semifinals and final.
"I do like it a lot," McDavid said. "It makes it a lot of fun. … I think the 3-on-3 worked really well the last two years and I'm looking forward to doing it again."
-- NHL.com Staff Writer Tom Gulitti and NHL.com correspondents Craig Morgan and Sean Farrell contributed to this report