Voting is now up for the NHL All-Star game.
This year the NHL is trying something new by making the All-Star game more like a pick up game. How the All-Star team is picked hasn't changed. Fans still vote on the starters and coaches still pick the rest of the team but this year two captains will be picked and they will decide who ends up on what team.
So for example Toews can pick Alex the Great with his first pick instead of buddy and teammate Patrick Kane. I think this could get very interesting with the captains passing on teammates and country men.
Voting is unlimited so like we say to vote in Chicago, vote early and often.
Here is my first ballot which was the complete homer except for one choice.
Patrick Sharp, Marian Hossa and Capt Jonathan Toews
I don't think Toews deserves the spot yet but assuming his play will come around by all-star time and I feel he deserves to be one of the captains. NHL will lose people with Crosby and Alex O end up being the 2 captains. When it comes to Hossa and Sharp just imagine how bad the defending champs would be if they weren't so hot to start the season. You have to type in Sharp because it isn't on the ballot.
Brent Seabrook and Hammer Niklas Hjalmarsson
Hammer just blocks shots. He doesn't get a lot of points which will hurt his cause but he deserves a little credit. Seabrook has overtaken Duncan Keith as the Hawks best blueliner. Some of that has to do with Keith struggling and some finally seeing just how good Brent really is. Much like Sharp, Hammer is not on the ballot so make sure to type him in.
Jaroslav Halak, St. Louis Blues
I just couldn't take the homer route here. Marty Turco is not on the ballot and in my mind I can't put Crawford on their yet and Halak has been amazing. Most will go with Tim Thomas but he has had a soft schedule and lots of rest where Halak hasn't. Too bad Niemi sucks this year because I would love to vote for him but too bad.
Make sure you vote and get the Hawks to Raleigh