Sami Vatanen - defenceman, no.45
Vatanen's rookie campaign was an up-and-down affair. I mean literally. Between a handful of recalls and reassignments, Vatanen only played 48 games last season. Evidently, he did well enough when called up to earn big minutes this season. He's been one of the top scoring defencemen so far this season. Vatanen has 20 points (6G, 14A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Matt Beleskey - left winger, no.39
While in the past he's never reached 30 points, so far he's on pace to eclipse 30 goals. The gritty winger seems to finally be reaching his potential. He's been played on the Ducks top line before in his career, but is finally taking advantage of the cushy assignment. Beleskey has 14 points (12G, 2A) in 26 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Martin Erat - right wing, no.10
Erat has come to get a really bad rap in recent years, which is a real shame. His post-lockout seasons had him scoring squarely in the 50-70 point range from year, with his numbers being brought down to 40-60 range by injuries. His recent lack of production hasn't been his fault, so much as the result of being traded to a Washington team who didn't use him probably, and then to an Arizona team that he hasn't fit very well on. His last season in Nashville saw him finish with 58 points in 71 games. Erat has 11 points (5G, 6A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Antoine Vermette - centre, no.50
While his production has been down since scoring 65 points in 2008/09 with Columbus, Vermette has been a steady two-way centre for every team he's played for. This season he's rebounding and is on pace for nearly 60 points. Vermette has 17 points (6G, 11A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Milan Lucic - left winger, no.17
Based on this season alone, Lucic isn't particularly deserving of All-Star consideration. Based on his general conduct on-and-off-ice, he isn't particularly deserving of All-Star consideration. Still, Lucic is only 26, probably has a few years of good hockey left, and could pick up his production this season. While his reputation is that of a big lug brought up by good linemates and sheer force of will, it does take a modicum of skill to have Lucic's recent production, which includes two 60-point campaigns directly preceding the lockout season (one of which was a 30-goal campaign), and another 59-point campaign directly following it. His possession numbers are good too. Lucic has 12 points (5G, 7A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Loui Eriksson - right winger, no.21
A lot of people would say Eriksson hasn't been a good fit on Boston's scoring line, where he's been lined up with Lucic and David Krejci. To that I say look at how many games Krejci's been out and how much its affected Lucic's PPG. If he can get both of them healthy, Eriksson would be producing more. At this rate, he's still outproducing Lucic. Cut the dude some slack. Eriksson has 13 points (3G, 10A) in 25 games. He represented Dallas in the 2011 All-Star Game.
Dougie Hamilton - defenceman, no.27
Zdeno Chara has missed plenty of games this season, and even when healthy, has been on pace for one of the worst offensive years of his career. Meanwhile Hamilton has taken on the big minutes and been a huge producer for Boston. He's on pace for nearly 50 points in only his third season and is eclipsing 22 minutes per night on average. Hamilton has 15 points (5G, 10A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Torey Krug - defenceman, no.47
Krug isn't having the greatest sophomore season this year, but one must not ignore his rookie campaign. He's small, was sheltered as one expects of a rookie, and earned all but 16 of his points last year on the power play, but you can't just ignore 40 points from a rookie defenceman. Krug has seven points (3G, 4A) in 21 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Cody Hodgson - centre, no.19
Hodgson is one of Buffalo's worst offensive producers this season, but wasn't so much last season. Being a no.1 or no.2 centre, Hodgson would have finished with ~50 points had he not missed ten games. It's not top centre territory, but on the ever-anemic Sabres, it's pretty good. Buffalo's other top forwards are scoring just as little as him, so he's not alone in his likely-temporary suckage. Hodgson has two points (1G, 1A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Zemgus Girgensons - centre, no.28
Girgensons was the only active NHLer to represent Latvia at the Sochi Olympics, and remains the only active Latvian-born NHLer. Not a big scorer or flashy producer, Girgensons has earned himself plenty of admiration from Buffalo fans, and evidently NHL fans the world over, for his hard-working play. One pace for a 20-20 campaign, he's got game too. How else do you explain him leading all NHLers in All-Star voting? Girgensons has 13 points (7G, 6A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Tyler Ennis - centre, no.63
The diminutive centre has emerged as one of Buffalo's top players. He's currently on pace for over 20 goals and 50 points. He's one of the few players in Buffalo who's on pace for a better season than last year, rather than last. Ennis has 16 points (7G, 9A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Chris Stewart - right winger, no.80
Stewart has the reputation, likely justified but still a reputation, of an inconsistent winger. Let's look at the teams he's played for: a Colorado team he got 60 points for in 2009/10, just prior to their years of ineffectiveness under Joe Sacco, followed by a St. Louis team that viewed scoring as a whole to be secondary, followed by the really bad Buffalo team he's languishing for now. If Brian Gionta can be on the ballot, Stewart, who is on pace for 10 goals, can too. Stewart has four points (3G, 1A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Dennis Wideman - defenceman, no.6
In his last season since joining Calgary, Wideman was finished with 46 points. He's on pace for a nearly equal 44 points and a would-be-career-high 27 goals. After a couple mediocre seasons for Calgary, Wideman is bouncing back and is deserving of an All-Star nod. Wideman has 13 points (8G, 5A) in 24 games. He represented Washington in the 2012 All-Star Game.
Curtis Glencross - left winger, no.20
Aside from the lockout-shortened 2012/13 season and an injury-plagued 2013/14 season, Glencross hasn't fallen below 40 points in a season. Not a flashy star, Glencross' claim to fame has been consistent mid-level production, efficient shooting percentages, gritty two-way play, and a good work ethic. Glencross has 14 points (4G, 10A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jiri Hudler - right winger, no.24
Hudler's been stepping up this season. He's on pace for nearly 40 goals and 80 points. While an inconsistent ~50 point player getting as much as he did thanks to some favourable zone starts to a legitimate first liner playing tougher forward minutes, Hudler has begun to emerge as a star in the NHL. Hudler has 23 points (11G, 12A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Andrej Sekera - defenceman, no.4
Sekera's a decent puck mover and can handle tough minutes, but I doubt anyone was expecting Sekera to have the season he did last year. One of the few bright spots on the Carolina roster last year, he topped 10 goals and 44 points, despite having never reached 30 in the past. While this season his production has dropped to his usual career average, he's still on pace for 29 assists and is a plus-possession player. Sekera has eight assists in 22 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jiri Tlusty - left winger, no.19
After years of falling short of expectations, aside from the lockout-shortened season in 2012/13, Tlusty is now producing at a comparable level to his linemate Eric Staal. He's on pace so far to nearly reach 40 goals, which is first line scoring despite his low assists-per-game. Tlusty has 13 points (10G, 3A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Justin Faulk - defenceman, no.27
One of the only two defencemen to represent the rookies during the 2012 All-Star Weekend is making a case for his inclusion in the All-Star festivities with a 0.66 point-per-game pace. He is one of the few Hurricanes players improving over past seasons. Faulk has 15 points (3G, 12A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Niklas Hjalmarsson - defenceman, no.4
The 26 points he finished with last season weren't outstanding among defenders by any means, but he's an oft-overlooked player. He logs over 20 minutes per night on average, and while known as a defence-first shot blocker, is also a plus-possession player with puck-moving skills. If a player gets named to the All-Star Game specifically for defensive ability, Hjalmarsson would fit the bill. Hjalmarsson has six points (1G, 5A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Kris Versteeg - right winger, no.23
Squarely a mid-six winger with some scoring chops, Versteeg seems to have learned some things from his time as a go-to scorer in Florida and is applying that to his second stint in Chicago. He is currently scoring 0.90 points-per-game. Versteeg has 18 points (7G, 11A) in 20 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Marian Hossa - right winger, no.81
While Hossa's always been an elite two-way winger, he's clearly dropping off this season. His 0.71 points-per-game provided it lasts the season, would be the lowest of his career since the 0.50 from his 1998/99 rookie campaign. Any All-Star consideration he'd get from here on out would be out of recognition for his past accomplishments, though there are players on the ballot who have scored less this season. Hossa has 17 points (3G, 14A) in 24 games. He represented Ottawa in the 2001 and 2002 All-Star Games, Atlanta in the 2007 and 2008 All-Star Games, and Chicago in the 2012 All-Star Game.
Tyson Barrie - defencman, no.4
Barrie had a strong 2012/13 season, but was forced to start last season in the minors. Thankfully for him, he was brought back up quickly and nearly finished with 40 points. Improving to a 60-plus point pace, Barrie has become Colorado's chief point-getter from the back end. Barrie has 19 points (3G, 16A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Erik Johnson - defenceman, no.6
Johnson probably isn't to be a Pronger-level dominant defenceman like was hoped when he was drafted first overall. Still, he hasn't been a bust by any means. After a miserable four assists in the lockout season, he came close to 40 points for the second time in his career. He's proven himself to be a top-pairing defenceman and is no worse than Colorado's second best. Johnson has 13 points (4G, 9A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Ryan O'Reilly - left winger, no.90
As a centre, O'Reilly's mediocre. As a winger, O'Reilly's super valuable. As a centre, his prolonged 2012-2013 contract dispute, his short-lived hold out in Russia, and that debacle with Calgary are disproportionate to his value. As a winger, it seems a little more justified. Topping 60 points and winning the Lady Byng Trophy with only 2 accidentally accrued late-season PIMs, O'Reilly emerged last season as a top-line winger. As long as he stays on the wing on the top line, he'll continue to produce like one. O'Reilly has 13 points (4G, 9A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
James Wisniewski - defenceman, no.21
Last season, Wisniewski surprised with his second 51-point-in-75-game season. While he's on pace for significantly less this season, he's still the same points pace as teammate, as well as being on pace to outscore him. Wisniewski has 10 points (2G, 8A) in 21 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Nick Foligno - left winger, no.71
Foligno is so far on pace for the most productive season of his career. If he keeps up his current pace and stays healthy, the versatile two-way winger would shoot up from ~45 to ~70 points, blowing his established career highs out of the water. He's been one of Columbus' most productive players this season, which makes his absence from the ballot rather bizarre. Foligno has 22 points (10G, 12A) in 23 games. He hasn't played in the All-Star Game.
Trevor Daley, defenceman, no.6
The longest-tenured member of the Stars has never reached 30 points, being used primarily as a shutdown defenceman. This season, aided by an influx of talent up front, Daley has improved his offensive production. Though in the midst of a cold streak as of this writing, he's on pace for over 40 points, a massive improvement over his usual output. Daley has 12 points (5G, 7A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Alex Goligoski, defenceman, no.33
Presently, Goligoski hasn't been producing much, though he finished what started as a weak season last year with 42 points. He plays top minutes for Dallas, and is their best defenceman. Goligoski has 10 points (1G, 9A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Much like Beleskey, Abdelkader has been for his entire NHL career a low-scoring grinder, occasionally getting minutes with his team's top talents, but ultimately unable to take advantage. This season, he's breaking out, setting a pace for over 20 goals and 50 points. Abdelkader has 15 points (7G, 8A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
If I had to choose one Detroit defenceman to pair with Niklas Kronwall, I'd pick DeKeyser. He has the most upside, has done the best job of translating his skills to the NHL, and his puck-moving defensive game compliments Kronwall's scoring and hitting style well. DeKeyser is on pace to top 30 points. DeKeyser has 10 points (1G, 9A) in 24 games. He hasn't played in the All-Star Game.
While still not approaching the 30-goal territory from 2008/09, Franzen is producing enough goals and assists to set pace for over 60 points. It would be the highest total of his career and he deserves consideration for that. Franzen has 15 points (6G, 9A) in 18 games. He hasn't played in the All-Star Game.
Jeff Petry - defenceman, no.2
While Petry won't wow anyone with his scoring and gets a ton of flak from Oilers fans as a bad defenceman (probably because he isn't one of those linebacker-on-ice types), he meshes well with Justin Schultz. While Schultz is a skilled point-producer, Petry's forte is moving the puck. He is one of Edmonton's few plus-possession players. Petry has four points (2G, 2A) in 24 games.
Nail Yakupov - right winger, no.10
Yakupov has been trending down since his 2012/13 season. While he's scoring at the lowest rate of his short career, he's got upside, and if he were to get minutes with better players (no no.2 centre is the crux of this issue), he's improve. Yakupov has seven points (3G, 4A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Nick Bjugstad - centre, no.27
Though low on the overall scoring list, Bjugstad is on pace for 30 goals. That's top-30 in the NHL for goals. If one forward for Florida were to be on the All-Star ballot, Bjugstad would be my pick hands-down. In addition to his current scoring clip, his 38 points last year, while low, led Florida overall. Bjugstad has 12 points (8G, 4A) in 22 games.
Dustin Brown - right winger, no.23
Brown used to be a high-scoring power forward, regularly getting between 50 and 60 points, as well as a bunch of goals. In a problem that seems to be going around a few NHL teams, Brown's physical style is rearing its ugly head and causing him to slow down and struggle. If Brown were to get All-Star consideration, it would be as Los Angeles' captain and an-until recently productive player. Brown has seven points (4G, 3A) in 24 games. He represented Los Angeles in the 2009 All-Star Game.
Tyler Toffoli - right winger, no.73
Toffoli was up and down in his rookie year, but broke out with That 70s Line in the playoffs. He is the Kings' current leadin scorer, and is on pace for over 30 goals and 60 points. Toffoli has 19 points (9G, 10A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Nino Niederreiter - right winger, no.22
While on pace for a pedestrian 50 points, it's a big improvement for Niederreiter, who opened his career with three points across 64 games in two seasons, followed by a year in the minors before joining Minnesota. Even better is that he's on pace for nearly 40 goals. Niederreiter has 14 points (11G, 3A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jason Pominville - right winger, no.29
Pominville has been a consistent 50-70 point player in his career. While on pace for somewhat lower totals, Pominville's still one of Minnesota's top offensive players and doing better than Thomas Vanek, who is on the ballot. Pominville has 15 points (4G, 11A) in 23 games. He represented Buffalo in the 2012 All-Star Game.
Brendan Gallagher - right winger, no.11
While not a flashy scorer and somewhat lacking in further upside, Gallagher is in his own way a star for Montreal. Recently signed to a big-money six-year extension, eschewing the usual bridge contract, Gallagher posts 20 and 20 every season, in addition to providing hard-working grit and defence. Gallagher has 13 points (6G, 7A) in 26 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Sergei Gonchar - defenceman, no.55
Gonchar would most definitely be a player added to the All-Star Game because of past accomplishments. On pace for only 16 assists, the recently acquired Gonchar wouldn't get in on the strength of this season. Gonchar has three assists in 13 games. He represented Washington in the 2001, 2002, and 2003 All-Star Games and Pittsburgh in the 2008 All-Star Game.
Craig Smith - left winger, no.15
Smith isn't part of Nashville's big-story top line this season, but has been quietly producing offence for Nashville anyway. 25-goal, 25-assist players are an asset, especially for traditionally low-scoring teams, making Smith a star on this team. Smith has 14 points (7G, 7A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Mike Ribeiro - centre, no.63
Ribeiro produced an underwhelming 47 points last season, and was bought out by Arizona, a team one would think really needs offence like Ribeiro can provide. On pace for over 60 points playing with discarded sniper James Neal and rookie Filip Forsberg, Ribeiro is back to star territory. Ribeiro has 18 points (6G, 12A) in 23 games. He represented Dallas in the 2008 All-Star Game.
Marek Zidlicky - defenceman, no.2
It's somewhat rare that a player continues to be as strong offensively at age 37 as he was early in his career. On pace for 41 points, one fewer than he finished with last year, Zidlicky is just that. Even more impressive is that he's setting that pace despite being given a bit less icetime in favour of younger players. Zidlicky has 12 points (3G, 9A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Andy Greene - defenceman, no.6
While his production is down again from last year, last season he produced a decent 32 points, second only to his 37 from 2009/10. While not a big scorer, Greene is a good defender and puck-mover, easily one of the Devils' most important players. Greene has seven assists in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Travis Hamonic - defenceman, no.3
Hamonic hasn't actualized his offensive potential yet, but has emerged as a major defender. He handles major minutes for the Islanders and is one of their most important players. Hamonic has six points (3G, 3A) in 20 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Lubomir Visnovsky - defenceman, no.11
While he won't get anywhere close to returning to the 68 points from his 2010/11 season, Visnovsky plays top-4 minutes for the Islanders. Any consideration he'd get for the All-Star Game would come from past achievements. Visnovsky has six points (1G, 5A) in 17 games. He represented Los Angeles in the 2007 All-Star Game.
Marc Staal - defenceman, no.18
After missing most of the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons with serious injuries, Staal is healthy for the time being. Not a big producer, Staal is one of the best examples of a talented defence-first defenceman. He was on the ballot for 2012. Staal has four assists in 24 games. He represented the Rangers in the 2011 All-Star Game.
Derek Stepan - centre, no.21
Stepan is having an impressive season. Stepping up without of the picture, Stepan has set a pace for 76 points. Even more impressive is that he missed the first 12 games with a broken fibula. He's emerged as a legitimate no.1 centre. Stepan has 13 points (2G, 11A) in 12 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Kyle Turris - centre, no.7
Turris, as a no.2 centre last season, fell just short of 60 points. This season, while he's on pace for a few fewer points, he's the no.1 centre now, and has done a decent job in Jason Spezza's shoes. Turris has 15 points (4G, 11A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Milan Michalek - left winger, no.9
Michalek represented Ottawa at the 2012 All-Star Game en route to a 30-goal 60-point season. While injuries and inconsistent play have hurt is production horribly, he's still a top-6 forward for Ottawa, and is more likely to rebound, considering he doesn't focus on more taxing physical play. Michalek has seven points (2G, 5A) in 22 games. He represented Ottawa in the 2012 All-Star Game.
Clarke MacArthur - left winger, no.16
While MacArthur has yet to return to the 60-point territory from his 2010/11 season, MacArthur has been one of Ottawa's top players. He's on pace for a career-high 29 goals, a would-be-career-high. MacArthur has 15 points (8G, 7A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Braydon Coburn - defenceman, no.5
While he isn't a major offensive contributor, Coburn is a good defenceman. While he's struggled with it this season, Coburn's main strength has been puck possession, in addition to a decent physical game. Coburn has two points (1G, 1A) in 11 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Brayden Schenn - left winger, no.10
Schenn hasn't produced much more than a half-a-point-per-game in his career. This career, he's on a 0.74 PPG pace, which would lead to 61 points, a distant career high. Schenn has 17 points (7G, 10A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Michael Del Zotto - defenceman, no.15
While he's on a cold streak that has brought his scoring pace down to only 29 points, it's still an improvement over last season, and he's got a nearly 50% Corsi %. Once he starts producing points again he'll recover. Del Zotto has eight points (2G, 6A) in 22 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Andrew MacDonald - defenceman, no.47
It's no secret what analytics say about MacDonald, specifically that he's not nearly as good as everyone says he is. Still, he looked like he was outperforming his league-minimum contract when he was traded last season, and I can see the All-Star decision committee considering that if they decide on a defensive defenceman to throw a bone to when deciding on the roster. MacDonald has three points (1G, 2A) in 12 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Olli Maatta - defenceman, no.3
Maatta has been playing an integral Top-4 role with the Penguins. With the disappointing performance of Christian Ehrhoff and the decline of Paul Martin, Maatta has taken on more minutes, and is also on pace for over 30 points. He's also shown character, demonstrated with his continued play while awaiting surgery to remove a thyroid tumour, and with his speedy return following surgery. Maatta has eight points (1G, 7A) in 17 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Marc-Andre Fleury - goaltender, no.29
The only goaltender on this list is the only goaltender I considered worthy of All-Star consideration that wasn't on the All-Star ballot. He's posted good numbers this season, a 0.942 Save %, four shutouts, and a 13-4-1 record. Of the goalies left off the list, he's the one most considered an All-Star starting goaltender. He represented Pittsburgh in the 2011 All-Star Game.
Patric Hornqvist - right winger, no.72
While it's easy to see why he's been scoring so much (he's got really good teammates here), Hornqvist has produced very well. If Chris Kunitz is on the ballot, why not Hornqvist? Hornqvist has 25 points (11G, 14A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Logan Couture - centre, no.39
Couture is currently tied for the Sharks lead in points and has three more goals than Joe Thornton, the player he's tied with. He's a legitimate no.1 centre, and only needs to wait for Thornton to be gone to take his place. Couture has 21 points (10G, 11A) in 25 games. He represented San Jose in the 2012 All-Star Game.
Tommy Wingels - right winger, no.57
Following a breakout 38-point season, Wingels has taken on a major scoring role in San Jose's top-6. He's rewarded San Jose for his increased role by being a plus-possession player and setting a pace for over 20 goals and nearly 50 points. Wingels has 15 points (7G, 8A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jori Lehtera - centre, no.12
A 2006 draft pick, Lehtera has finally joined the Blues. Doing better than anyone could have expected, he's centred one of the NHL's most productive lines this season. If not for him being too old, he'd be considered a rookie. As it stands, he's scoring just under a point-per-game. Lehtera has 21 points (7G, 14A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jaden Schwartz - left winger, no.17
Despite a recent cold streak, Schwartz, the left winger of the aptly-named "STL line" has been scoring 0.87 points-per-game. The 71 points he's on pace to finish with is a big step up from last season's 56 points. Schwartz has 21 points (8G, 13A) in 24 games.. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Vladimir Tarasenko - right winger, no.91
Easily the most puzzling exclusion from the main ballot is Tarasenko. In his third season, he's been on countless highlight reels and is on pace for nearly 50 goals and 90 points. Bizarrely, he's 30th in All-Star voting (so vote for him). Regardless, if he doesn't end up in the All-Star Game, I'm calling shenanigans. Tarasenko has 26 points (14G, 12A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Jason Garrison - defenceman, no.5
While not quite where he was in 2011/12 in terms of goal scoring, Garrison is scoring at a higher points-per-game rate than even that breakout season. Playing on a 1A pairing, he's logging over 20 minutes per night. Garrison has 14 points (2G, 12A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Anton Stralman - defenceman, no.6
Stralman broke out last season, scoring a whopping 13 points. He played top four minutes last season, and became a poster boy for contributing offensively without producing many points. This season, he's already reached last season's point total and is well on his way to breaking his previous 34-point career high. Stralman has 13 points (2G, 11A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Ondrej Palat - left winger, no.18
Palat finished last season with 59 points and placed second in Calder Trophy voting, being named to the All-Rookie Team. Palat plays top six minutes, and is on pace for a few fewer points due to slightly less playing time. Palat has 17 points (6G, 11A) and a 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Cody Franson - defenceman, no.4
Last season, Franson posted a career high of 33 points. This season, he's one of Toronto's top-4 defencemen and is on pace to top the 10-goal and 50-point marks. A lot can change from here to April, but based on his production this season so far, he'd deserve an All-Star nod. Franson has 15 points (4G, 11A) in 21 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Tyler Bozak - centre, no.42
Debate's raged on whether Bozak is a top centre. Fans will point to his steadily increasing point totals and his "chemistry with Phil Kessel" and "defensive ability". Detractors will point out how he does poorly in the underlying numbers and has his numbers inflated by his top linemates. Regardless of debate, he's on pace for 39 goals and 39 assists, and my personal position is that a player needs some hockey ability of his own to get that high. Regardless of my thoughts, he'd probably get consideration based on his production alone. Bozak has 22 points (11G, 11A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Dan Hamhuis - defenceman, no.2
I decided on one additional defenceman from Vancouver. The one I decided on was the one who finished with more points last season, played more minutes, and reached the Olympics. Hamhuis earned All-Star consideration for 2011, and despite being more of a defensive defenceman, has two 30+ point seasons. He's out with a lower-body injury, but when he returns, I expect he'd be able to turn around his lack of goals and weak underlyings. Still, he's on pace for more points than last season only on the strength of assists. Hamhuis has six assists in 20 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Nick Bonino - defenceman, no.3
Bonino broke out last season, producing at a rate that would have resulted in over 50 points had he played a few more games. This season, he was expected to replaceon the second line but was seen as a slight downgrade. He's on pace for over 60 points, and should be getting some looks. Bonino has 19 points (7G, 12A) in 24 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Joel Ward - right winger, no.42
Ward, a checking forward in seasons past, finished last season with 24 goals and 25 assists for 49 points. A cold streak has brought his projection down from that 49-point total, but he's also shooting more, setting a pace for over 30 goals. Ward has 12 points (9G, 3A) in 23 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Mike Green - defenceman, no.52
Green isn't going to have another 70-point season. He's definitely not going to score 30 goals. Still, he's setting a pace for just under 50 points, which is totally reasonable for an offensive defenceman. He's out with an injury, but if he can get back quickly and make up some production, he could get to back 50-point territory. The reason for him not being on the ballot is probably due to his injury history and his reputation as a defensive liability, even though he's been a better possession player than teammate John Carlson. Green has 12 points (3G, 9A) in 19 games. Green represented Washington in the 2011 All-Star Game.
Jacob Trouba - defenceman, no.8
Trouba impressed last season, showing a rough physical game and producing at a pace that would have easily led to 40 points were it not for an early-season injury. He averaged more icetime than any rookie last season and nearly broke even on possession, all while partnered with a much worse player. Winnipeg's offensive struggles, and his increased responsibility without much help defensively has resulted in a bit of a sophomore slump for Trouba's whose offensive and underlying numbers are down, but he's still had some good games. Trouba has seven points (2G, 5A) in 25 games.He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Bryan Little - centre, no.18
Little's production is down from last season, more in line with what he usually get, but between flirting with 50-60 point territory and posting good underlying numbers, Little's been a legitimate top centre. Little has 15 points (8G, 7A) in 25 games.He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
Blake Wheeler - right winger, no.26
Though he's on pace for a bit of a down season compared to last season, Wheeler's led the Jets franchise in scoring since he joined the team in late in the 2010/11 season. Last season, he was just short of the 30-goal and 70-point marks. I'd be so bold as to suggest he's the Jets' best forward. Wheeler has 16 points (8G, 8A) in 25 games. He hasn't participated in the All-Star Game.
note: Technically all these players can be voted for on the All-Star ballot. In lieu of the write-in feature from previous ballots, you can bring up a selection of all the players on a team roster by going to the voting page and selecting a specific team.