NEW YORK (January 8, 2008) -- National Hockey League fans have rewarded the Detroit Red Wings' record-setting start to the season by voting a League-high three Red Wings to All-Star starting berths in 2008 XM/NHL All-Star Fan Balloting, presented by 2K Sports. Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom and forwards Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk will start for the Western Conference in the 2008 NHL All-Star Game, Sunday, Jan. 27 at Philips Arena in Atlanta (6 p.m., ET, VERSUS, CBC, RDS, NHL Radio).
Lidstrom led all Western Conference players with 477,787 votes and will be making his eighth consecutive All-Star Game start, while Zetterberg (326,244) and Datsyuk (303,309) are among the eight first-time starters in this year's lineups. The Red Wings (32-8-3, 67 points) hold a commanding 15-point lead in the Western Conference standings and became the first club in League history to post 30 victories in the first half of the season following a 4-1 victory over the Dallas Stars Jan. 2.
Joining the three Red Wings in the Western Conference lineup are Calgary Flames forward Jarome Iginla (244,538) and defenseman Dion Phaneuf (307,358), each making his first career start, and the Vancouver Canucks' Roberto Luongo (263,221), who was voted the Western Conference starter in goal for the second consecutive year.
Reigning NHL MVP and scoring champion Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins, who led all vote-getters for the second consecutive season with 507,274 votes, heads the list of six Eastern Conference starters. Crosby's linemates will be current NHL scoring leader Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning (224,661) and Ottawa Senators right wing Daniel Alfredsson (224,483), each of whom will make his first career start.
Voted to the Eastern Conference blueline are Andrei Markov of the Montreal Canadiens (316,136) and Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins (271,272), also first-time starters. The goaltender will be Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils (220,392), who captured his fourth career All-Star starting berth and will be making his 10th appearance overall, tied with the Red Wings' Lidstrom for the most among the players announced today.
The 2007-08 season marked the 20th year in which fans determined the starting lineups for the NHL All-Star Game. From Nov. 13 through Jan. 2, fans around the world were able to vote online at NHL.com for six Eastern Conference All-Stars and six Western Conference All-Stars: three forwards, two defensemen and one goaltender for each team. In addition, U.S. fans could cast votes through Verizon Wireless cell phones. The top three forwards, two defensemen and one goaltender from each Conference comprised the starting lineups.