NEW YORK – Four Calgary Flames, including first-timer Dion Phaneuf, are among the players on the NHL all-star ballot, the league announced Friday.
Joining Phaneuf, who was among 37 players making their debuts on the fan ballot, are forward Jarome Iginla, defenceman Robyn Regehr and goalie Miikka Kiprusoff.
Of the four, only Iginla has made an appearance at the all-star game, in 2001-02, 2002-03 and 2003-04. There was no all-star game last season although Kiprusoff was voted to the first all-star team at the end of the season.
Phaneuf and other budding stars like Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins were among 37 players making their debuts on the NHL all-star fan ballot.
Fans can begin voting online on Nov. 15 and calgaryflames.com will provide you with the links and instructions for you to cast your ballot on NHL.com when the voting begins.
The NHL didn’t have an all-star game last year because of the Olympic break in Turin. This season’s all-star game goes Jan. 24 in Dallas.
Other first-timers on the ballot include Ales Hemsky of the Edmonton Oilers, Jason Spezza of the Ottawa Senators, Eric Staal and Cam Ward of the Carolina Hurricanes, Jonathan Cheechoo of the San Jose Sharks, Rick Nash of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Ryan Miller of the Buffalo Sabres, prized rookie Evgeni Malkin of the Penguins and the Sedin twins in Vancouver.
All three goalies from Canada’s teams in the Western Conference made it on the ballot: Edmonton’s Dwayne Roloson, Calgary’s Kiprusoff and Vancouver’s Roberto Luongo.
Andrew Raycroft of the Toronto Maple Leafs also made the ballot as one of eight goalies in the Eastern Conference but the Montreal Canadiens tandem of David Aebischer and Cristobal Huet did not, nor did Ray Emery or Martin Gerber of the Ottawa Senators.
On defence, Chris Phillips and Wade Redden of the Senators were among 12 Eastern Conference defenders chosen, as were Tomas Kaberle and Bryan McCabe of the Leafs and Sheldon Souray of the Canadiens.
In the West, Regehr joined Phaneuf from the Flames on the ballot among defencemen as did Mattias Ohlund of the Canucks.
Eastern Conference forwards on the ballot include Spezza, Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley from the Senators, and fellow captains Saku Koivu of the Habs and Mats Sundin of the Leafs.
Joining Oilers teammate Hemsky among Western Conference forwards were Ryan Smyth and Petr Sykora, Markus Naslund will accompany the Sedin twins from Vancouver while Iginla was the lone Flames forward.