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Expanded All-Star Ballot 2018 - Metropolitan Division

It’s time to vote on All-Stars for the 2018 All-Star Game. Here’s a larger list of players I, by my arbitrary criteria, deem worthy of considering for votes. Up next is the Metropolitan Division.

NHL: Tampa Bay Lightning at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

This list includes, in addition to every non-rookie on the official ballot, high-scoring players not on the ballot, lower-scoring players with nonetheless strong numbers, contributing fan favourites, “legacy” picks who have had great seasons in the recent past, and team captains. Each player is listed with a brief explanation of why they’re on the list. I will also list their prior All-Star appearances where applicable. All information is accurate to December 7.

The Ballot

Carolina Hurricanes

Noah Hanifin (Defenceman-5)

5G, 9A, 14 PTS, 58.6 ESCF% in 26 GP

Hanifin, one of only a couple of 2015 draftees to make it to the NHL permanently in their Draft+1 year, improved from 22 points as a rookie to 29 as a sophomore. The next place for Hanifin to go is to get over the 30-point hump, which he could do this season, being on pace for 44 points (16G, 28A) in 82 games.

Hanifin has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jordan Staal (Centre-11)

7G, 9A, 16 PTS, 53.1 ESCF% in 26 GP

Staal hasn’t reached the 50-point mark since 2012, his last season with Pittsburgh and his only 50-point season to date. The thing is, that year he played only 62 games, meaning he scored at a 67-point pace. He’s on pace for 50 points (22G, 28A) in 82 games so far this season.

Staal has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Justin Williams (Right Wing-14)

5G, 13A, 18 PTS, 57.1 ESCF% in 26 GP

With only a few outstanding regular seasons under his belt, with 76 points in 2006, 67 the following year, and only two seasons anywhere near close to 60, Williams has always shone brightest in the playoffs. At 36 years of age at the start of the season after two disappointing postseasons for Washington, Williams appeared to be declining. So far, however, his return to Carolina, where he had those aforementioned outstanding seasons, has revitalized his offensive game. He is on pace for 57 points (16G, 41A) in 82 games.

Williams represented Carolina in the 2007 All-Star Game.

Sebastian Aho (Left Wing-20)

5G, 14A, 19 PTS, 54.6 ESCF% in 26 GP

In spite of a weaker shooting percentage than last season, the Finnish sophomore is still on track to beat his rookie point total, on pace for 60 points (16G, 44A) in 82 games. He scored 24 goals last season, so expect an uptick in goals eventually.

Aho has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Lee Stempniak (Right Wing-21)

Yet to play this season

Stempniak has yet to make his season debut due to various upper-body injuries. One of the league’s more versatile forwards, Stempniak can provide leadership and scoring depth as a fourth-line forward (see his 10 points in 18 games in such a role with Winnipeg), or fill in on a scoring line and put up strong numbers (see his two seasons in striking distance of 30 goals and two more one short of 20).

Stempniak has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Justin Faulk (Defenceman-27)

1G, 6A, 7 PTS, 55.4 ESCF% in 26 GP

Faulk has gotten off to a bad offensive start this season, being on pace for only 22 points (3G, 19A) in 82 games, but has a decent history of production. He scored 49 points in 2014/15. He then scored 37 points in each of the last two seasons, a 48- and 40-point pace, respectively.

Faulk represented Carolina in the 2015, 2016, and 2017 All-Star Games.

Elias Lindholm (Right Wing-28)

7G, 7A, 14 PTS, 51.9 ESCF% in 26 GP

Lindholm has improved in each of his seasons to date, going from 21 points as a rookie to two straight 39-point seasons and 45 last season. So far, his role has been as a two-way specialist. He is on pace for 44 points (22G, 22A) in 82 games.

Lindholm has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Cam Ward (Goaltender-30)

4-2-0, 0.914 Save%, 0 SO in 7 GP

The 2006 Cup winner has become the backup for Carolina. Despite that, he was the starter as recently as last season and posted a 0.910 Save% as recently as 2015. He is on pace this season for a 13-6-0 record in 22 games.

Ward represented Carolina in the 2011 All-Star Game.

Scott Darling (Goaltender-33)

7-8-5, 0.902 Save%, 0 SO in 20 GP

Though the jury is still out on this first-year starter, Darling has some solid footing from last season. He posted an 18-5-5 record and 0.924 Save% in 32 games last season. He performed decently to start the season, but he’s slowed down, currently being on pace for a 22-25-16 record in 63 games.

Darling has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Victor Rask (Centre-49)

4G, 3A, 7 PTS, 53.2 ESCF% in 24 GP

Rask has trended down offensively the past couple of seasons, currenty scoring on pace for 23 points (10G, 13A) in 80 games. Despite that, he did score 21 goals and 48 points in 2015/16 and 45 points last season.

Rask has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jeff Skinner (Left Wing-53)

10G, 7A, 17 PTS, 56.5 ESCF% in 26 GP

Injuries have resulted in a career of ups and downs for Skinner. Even so, the ups have been way up. Last season saw Skinner score a career-high of 37 goals and tie his career-high of 63 points. This season Skinner, only 25 despite what seems like ages in this league, is on pace for 54 points (32G, 22A) in 82 games.

Skinner represented Carolina in the 2011 All-Star Game.

Jaccob Slavin (Defenceman-74)

2G, 4A, 6 PTS, 52.0 ESCF% in 26 GP

Slavin had an even better sophomore season last year than Hanifin had. Slavin improved from 20 points to 34 points. He has also posted strong Corsi numbers in his two seasons, but his offensive numbers have dropped, with Slavin only on pace for 19 points (6G, 13A) in 82 games.

Slavin has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Teuvo Teravainen (Centre-86)

8G, 14A, 22 PTS, 57.5 ESCF% in 26 GP

Last season, Teravainen, in his first season with Carolina and his second full season, jumped from 35 to 42 points. The young Finn is currently leading the team in scoring and is on pace for 69 points (25G, 44A) in 82 games.

Teravainen has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Seth Jones (Defenceman-3)

3G, 11A, 14 PTS, 55.9 ESCF% in 28 GP

Almost the entire Blue Jackets team is having a down year a month and a half into the season. That isn’t the case for Jones, who scored a career-high 42 points and is on pace for 41 points (9G, 32A) in 82 games.

Jones represented Columbus in the 2017 All-Star Game.

Zach Werenski (Defenceman-8)

8G, 7A, 15 PTS, 57.9 ESCF% in 28 GP

Werenski, a first-round pick in 2015, played his rookie season last year and was the second runner-up for the Calder Trophy with 47 points. While he’s not having a much better year this season, he’s basically matching last season’s production, currently on pace for 44 points (23G, 21A) in 82 games.

Werenski has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jack Johnson (Defenceman-7)

1G, 4A, 5 PTS, 48.8 ESCF% in 28 GP

Let’s get out of the way the fact that Johnson posts bad Corsi numbers every year. I’m well aware. Johnson occasionally posts good scoring numbers though. Last season, he rebounded from 14 points to 23. In 2014/15, he scored 40 points, after having scored 33 the year before. He was on this list during the post-Nash years when I thought he’d be named team captain because of his association with Team USA. Heis on pace for 15 points (3G, 12A) in 82 games.

Johnson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Artemi Panarin (Left Wing-9)

7G, 13A, 20 PTS, 60.5 ESCF% in 28 GP

Panarin, an undrafted free agent signing in 2015, won the Calder Trophy in 2016 with 30 goals and a still-career-high of 77 points. He followed that up with 74 points and a career-high 31 goals. Panarin is currently leading the team in scoring despite a post-trade scoring slump. He is on pace for 59 points (21G, 38A) in 82 games.

Panarin has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Alexander Wennberg (Centre-10)

1G, 9A, 10 PTS, 55.2 ESCF% in 22 GP

The last three seasons have seen a steady improvement from Wennberg. In 2015, he scored 20 points. In 2016, he scored 40. In 2017, he scored 59 points. He’s having a down season this year, on pace for only 34 points (3G, 31A) in 76 games, but remains a top-six forward and the team’s no.1 centre.

Wennberg has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Cam Atkinson (Right Wing-13)

6G, 3A, 9 PTS, 52.9 ESCF% in 24 GP

Last season saw Atkinson, a 5’8” 27-year-old, finish with 35 goals and 62 points. Atkinson is having a down season on a team full of them, on pace for 30 points (20G, 10A) in 78 games.

Atkinson represented Columbus in the 2017 All-Star Game.

Brandon Dubinsky (Centre-17)

3G, 6A, 9 PTS, 47.9 ESCF% in 28 GP

While in recent seasons the veteran two-way centre’s Corsi numbers have gotten worse, his offensive numbers have remained somewhat consistent. He scored 48 points in 2016 and 41 last year, and is on pace for 35 points (9G, 26A) in 82 games.

Dubinsky has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Oliver Bjorkstrand (Right Wing-28)

5G, 10A, 15 PTS, 50.8 ESCF% in 28 GP

Last season, Bjorkstrand scored 13 points in 26 games, playing out his rookie eligibility. This season, he’s already reached that number in fewer games and is on pace for 44 points (15G, 29A) in 82 games.

Boone Jenner (Left Wing-38)

3G, 5A, 8 PTS, 44.8 ESCF% in 21 GP

Jenner is tracking for a decline from last season’s production, on pace for only 29 points (11G, 18A) in 75 games. Back in 2016, however, he scored 30 goals and 49 points.

Jenner has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

David Savard (Defenceman-58)

2G, 5A, 7 PTS, 47.8 ESCF% in 27 GP

Savard’s offensive production has declined the past few seasons, with only 23 points in 74 games last season and 25 in 65 the year before. In 2015, he finished the season with a decent 36 points, cementing his place as a top-four defenceman in the NHL. This season, he’s on pace for 21 points (6G, 15A) in 81 games.

Savard has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Nick Foligno (Left Wing-71)

6G, 6A, 12 PTS, 49.5 ESCF% in 28 GP

Foligno seems to be on of those players whose seasons fluctuate between good and bad. In 2015, he scored career-highs of 31 goals and 73 points. In 2016, he scored only 37 points. In 2017, he bounced back to 51 points. This season, the third-year captain is having a down year, only on pace for 36 points (18G, 18A) in 82 games.

Foligno represented Columbus in the 2015 All-Star Game.

Sergei Bobrovsky (Goaltender-72)

14-7-1, 0.929 Save%, 3 SO in 22 GP

Bobrovsky is one of the NHL’s top goaltenders. He’s been a main reason for all of Columbus’ postseason appearances this decade. He is coming off his second Vezina Trophy and is on pace for a 41-20-3 record in 64 games.

Bobrovsky represented Columbus in the 2017 All-Star Game.

Josh Anderson (Right Wing-77)

10G, 7A, 17 PTS, 57.8 ESCF% in 26 GP

Anderson is coming off a respectable rookie campaign of 29 points in 78 games. This season, he’s grabbed hold of a top-six role on the team and is on pace for 53 points (31G, 22A) in 80 games, similar to do what Jenner did in 2016.

Anderson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

New Jersey Devils

John Moore (Defenceman-2)

3G, 5A, 8 PTS, 49.5 ESCF% in 27 GP

In terms of time on ice, Moore isn’t a great defenceman. In terms of underlying numbers, he’s pretty bad. Still, he scored 22 points in 63 games, a 29-point pace, last season. This season, he’s on pace for 24 points (9G, 15A) in 82 games.

Moore has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Andy Greene (Defenceman-6)

2G, 3A, 5 PTS, 41.5 ESCF% in 26 GP

Greene’s numbers have eroded for the past few years. He hasn’t reached 30 points since 2014 and he hasn’t reached 20 since 2015. This season, he’s on pace for 15 points (6G, 9A) in 81 games. He is also the team captain and TOI leader.

Greene has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Taylor Hall (Left Wing-9)

9G, 20A, 29 PTS, 47.9 ESCF% in 27 GP

Last season saw Hall, in his first season with New Jersey after his surprise (and poorly done) trade from Edmonton, finish with 53 points in 72 games, a 61-point pace. The season before, Hall scored 65 points, and he’d scored 80 points two seasons prior. This season, he’s on pace for 88 points (27G, 61A) in 82 games.

Hall represented Edmonton in the 2016 All-Star Game and New Jersey in the 2017 All-Star Game.

Travis Zajac (Centre-19)

1G, 0A, 1 PTS, 44.0 ESCF% in 10 GP

There’s not really any judging Zajac on this season, seeing as Zajac only made his season debut in mid-November. Last season saw Zajac score 14 goals and 45 points, his most in both categories since 2013/14, when he scored 18 goals and 48 points. He had back-to-back 60-point seasons in 2009 and 2010. He is on pace for seven points (7G, 0A) in 65 games.

Zajac has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Kyle Palmieri (Right Wing-21)

4G, 5A, 9 PTS, 49.9 ESCF% in 13 GP

Palmieri broke out offensively after joining his hometown Devils. He scored 30 goals and 57 points with them in 2016, and followed that up with an also-solid 26 goals and 53 points. He’s on pace for 47 points (21G, 26A) in 68 games.

Palmieri has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Damon Severson (Defenceman-28)

3G, 5A, 8 PTS, 51.3 ESCF% in 26 GP

Severson scored at a 27-point pace as a rookie. He finished last season with 31 points in 80 games, a 32-point pace. He’s on pace for 25 points (9G, 16A) in 81 games this season. In spite of his low production compared to his counterparts on other NHL teams, Severson is arguably New Jersey’s best offensive defenceman.

Severson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Cory Schneider (Goaltender-35)

11-5-3, 0.923 Save%, 1 SO in 20 GP

Last season was an anomaly for Schneider, posting a 0.908 Save%. Since he joined New Jersey, medicore-to-poor records have belied strong play and rate statistics. He is on pace for a 33-15-9 record in 61 games.

Schneider represented New Jersey in the 2016 All-Star Game.

Brian Gibbons (Centre-39)

11G, 4A, 15 PTS, 45.3 ESCF% in 27 GP

After Gibbons scored a solid 17 points in 41 games for Pittsburgh in 2013/14, I thought Gibbons had punched his ticket to a full-time spot in the NHL. With only 25 games in the three years that followed, it was apparent I was wrong. Until I wasn’t. Even when I expected him to stick around back in 2014, I never envisioned him on pace for 45 points (33G, 12A) in 82 games, as he is now.

Gibbons has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Miles Wood (Left Wing-44)

6G, 5A, 11 PTS, 48.2 ESCF% in 26 GP

Wood scored 17 points as an obscure rookie last season. This season, he’s on pace for 35 points (19G, 16A) in 81 games and is the third-highest scoring non-rookie on the Devils roster.

Wood has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Sami Vatanen (Defenceman-45)

1G, 3A, 4 PTS, 41.9 ESCF% in 18 GP

Vatanen is off to a slow start due to injury after slumping last season, but in the prior two seasons he scored 37 and 38 points, respectively. He is only on pace for 16 points (4G, 12A) in 73 games.

Vatanen has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Marcus Johansson (Left Wing-90)

3G, 3A, 6 PTS, 46.3 ESCF% in 13 GP

For the longest time, Johansson was on a line with star forwards in Washington and couldn’t muster even 20 goals or 50 points. His first 20-goal season came in 2015. Last season saw Johansson set new career-highs with 24 goals and 58 points. This season, he’s on pace for 32 points (16G, 16A) in 68 games.

Johansson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

New York Islanders

Thomas Greiss (Goaltender-1)

8-3-2, 0.890 Save%, 0 SO in 14 GP

Greiss has emerged as a starting goaltender since joining the Islanders. He posted a 0.913 Save% last season and 0.925 Save% the year before. He’s having a weak season so far in terms of save percentage, but is on pace for a 24-9-6 record in 43 games.

Greiss has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Nick Leddy (Defenceman-2)

6G, 17A, 23 PTS, 49.7 ESCF% in 27 GP

Leddy has improved his offensive numbers every season since the lockout. He scored 18 points in 48 games, a 31-point pace, in 2012/13. Afterward, he he went from 31 points in his last season with Chicago, to 37 in his first year with the Islanders, to 40, to 47 last season. He is on pace for 70 points (18G, 52A) in 82 games.

Leddy has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jordan Eberle (Right Wing-7)

11G, 9A, 20 PTS, 57.0 ESCF% in 27 GP

Last season saw Eberle score 51 points, his worst season since the 2010/11 season, when he scored at a 51-point pace as a rookie. Seen as no longer a fit with Edmonton and traded in a similarly bad deal to the one that sent Hall to New Jersey, Eberle has rebounded and could return to 30 goals for the first time since 2011/12. He is on pace for 60 points (33G, 27A) in 82 games.

Eberle represented Edmonton in the 2012 All-Star Game.

Josh Bailey (Right Wing-12)

5G, 26A, 31 PTS, 48.7 ESCF% in 27 GP

Last season, Bailey, the Isles’ first-round pick in 2008, wound up in a first-line role. While it was a move of necessity, the Islanders having let go of their best right winger the season before, Bailey made the most of it, improving from a down year of 32 points to a career-high of 56. This season, Bailey is well over a point a game and is in the mix for the team lead in points. He is on pace for 94 points (15G, 79A) in 82 games.

Bailey has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Andrew Ladd (Left Wing-16)

7G, 6A, 13 PTS, 56.3 ESCF% in 27 GP

Ladd rebounded after a slow start last season to finish with 31 points. This season he can challenge for 40. Back in 2014/15, Ladd scored a career-high 62 points as the captain of the Jets. He is on pace this season for 39 points (21G, 18A) in 82 games.

Ladd has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Anders Lee (Left Wing-27)

16G, 12A, 28 PTS, 52.0 ESCF% in 27 GP

Lee was an unsung rookie performer during the 2014/15 season, scoring 25 goals and 41 points. Last season, he rebounded from a sophomore slump with 34 goals and 52 points. This season, he is on pace for 85 points (49G, 36A) in 82 games.

Lee has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Brock Nelson (Centre-29)

7G, 3A, 10 PTS, 45.2 ESCF% in 27 GP

Nelson posted a career-high 45 points last season after having scored a career-high 26 goals the year before. His average TOI falling by over a minute due to the breakout of other forwards, Nelson is on pace for 30 points (21G, 9A) in 82 games.

Nelson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jaroslav Halak (Goaltender-41)

8-6-0, 0.905 Save%, 0 SO in 15 GP

In 2014/15, his first year with the Isles, Halak posted a 0.914 Save%. The following year, he posted a 0.919 Save%. Last season, which saw Halak demoted to the AHL and playing a backup’s number of games when in the NHL, he still posted a 0.915 Save%. This season is a weak one for Halak, but he’s back to regular NHL duty. He’s splitting starts with last season’s undisputed starter Greiss. He is on pace for a 24-18-0 record in 46 games.

Halak represented the Islanders in the 2015 All-Star Game.

Scott Mayfield (Defenceman-42)

2G, 4A, 6 PTS, 49.9 ESCF% in 17 GP

Last season, Mayfield posted a 51.16 ESCorsi% in 25 games. The big defensive defenceman is on pace for 25 points (8G, 17A) in 72 games. It’s pretty good, considering he’s fifth among Isles defencemen in average TOI.

Mayfield has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Calvin De Haan (Defenceman-44)

1G, 8A, 9 PTS, 49.0 ESCF% in 27 GP

De Haan showed a major improvement offensively last season, jumping from two goals and 16 points to five goals and 25 points. He is on pace for 27 points (3G, 24A) in 82 games this season. He posted a 0.57 Corsi%Rel last season after three straight seasons with a Corsi% over 50.

De Haan has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Johnny Boychuk (Defenceman-55)

3G, 5A, 8 PTS, 51.2 ESCF% in 27 GP

In terms of offensive production, Boychuk is coming off his worst season as an Islander. He scored 35 points in 72 games, a 40-point pace, in 2015. He scored 25 points in 75 games, a 30-point pace, in 2016. Last season, he scored 23 points in 66 games, a 29-point pace. He is only on pace for 24 points (9G, 15A) in 82 games so far this season. Good thing his Corsi numbers have recovered as of late. Boychuk posted a 1.64 Corsi%Rel last season and is posting a Corsi% over 50 this season.

Boychuk has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

John Tavares (Centre-91)

17G, 14A, 31 PTS, 51.7 ESCF% in 27 GP

Two seasons ago, Tavares scored 33 goals and 70 points, and the season before had 38 goals and 86 points. Last season, similar to Dallas’ Jamie Benn, he had a “down year,” falling to 28 goals and 66 points. Tavares is on pace for 95 points (52G, 43A) in 82 games.

Tavares represented the Islanders in the 2012, 2015, 2016, and 2017 All-Star Games.

New York Rangers

JT Miller (Centre-10)

4G, 16A, 20 PTS, 47.2 ESCF% in 27 GP

Miller finished second on the Rangers with 22 goals, 34 assists and 56 points, both career-highs. This season, Miller is on pace for 61 points (12G, 49A) in 82 games.

Miller has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Kevin Hayes (Centre-13)

5G, 6A, 11 PTS, 48.2 ESCF% in 27 GP

Last season saw Hayes rebound from a sophomore slump with career-highs of 17 goals, 32 assists, and 49 points. Unfortunately, he is on pace for around as many points this season as he had assists last season, 33 points (15G, 18A) in 82 games.

Hayes has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Chris Kreider (Left Wing-20)

10G, 7A, 17 PTS, 50.5 ESCF% in 27 GP

Kreider, after a few years of disappointing performances, finally broke out with a team-leading 28 goals and a team-fourth 53 points. This season, Kreider is on pace for 51 points (30G, 21A) in 82 games.

Kreider has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Kevin Shattenkirk (Defenceman-22)

5G, 15A, 20 PTS, 49.8 ESCF% in 27 GP

For the past three seasons, Shattenkirk has scored at an at least 50-point pace. His 44 points in 56 games in 2015 were a 65-point pace. His 44 points in 72 games in 2016 were a 50-point pace. Last season, he scored 56 points in 80 games between St. Louis and Washington. This season, he’s leading the way offensively for the Rangers, and is on pace for 51 points (15G, 46A) in 82 games this season.

Shattenkirk represented St. Louis in the 2015 All-Star Game.

Ryan McDonagh (Defenceman-27)

0G, 13A, 13 PTS, 50.4 ESCF% in 23 GP

McDonagh has been freed this season. With Dan Girardi gone and Marc Staal one of his least frequent defence partners, McDonagh, though yet to score a goal this season, is on pace for 44 points (0G, 44A) in 78 games this season and is so far posting a Corsi% over 50.

McDonagh represented the Rangers in the 2016 and 2017 All-Star Games.

Henrik Lundqvist (Goaltender-30)

13-6-2, 0.917 Save%, 2 SO in 23 GP

Though he started out not having a great season so far this year, Lundqvist has gotten going, and is on pace for a 39-18-6 record in 70 games. Lundqvist has been one of the NHL’s elite goaltenders. He posted a 0.910 Save% last season, and the year before he posted a 0.920 Save%.

Lundqvist represented the Rangers in the 2009, 2011, and 2012 All-Star Games.

Mats Zuccarello (Right Wing-36)

5G, 17A, 22 PTS, 49.4 ESCF% in 27 GP

Zuccarello currently sits in the top five in Rangers scoring. Last season, he led the Rangers with 59 points. The season before he had 61 points and was just a few goals short of 30. This season, he’s on pace for 67 points (15G, 52A) in 82 games.

Zuccarello has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Michael Grabner (Left Wing-40)

13G, 2A, 15 PTS, 46.7 ESCF% in 27 GP

After having not had a noteworthy offensive season since 2012, Grabner came out of nowhere last season to score 27 goals and 40 points. He’s on pace for 45 points (39G, 6A) in 82 games this season, and while his production is surely percentage driven, why not ride the wave in the meantime? He scored 32 goals and 52 points as a rookie with the Islanders in 2011.

Grabner has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Nick Holden (Defenceman-55)

1G, 3A, 4 PTS, 48.7 ESCF% in 22 GP

With low point production, on pace for 13 points (3G, 10A) in 77 games, and poor Corsi numbers, Holden is not an All-Star candidate based on this season. Still, he scored 11 goals, 23 assists, and 34 points last season, all career-highs. Back in 2013/14 with Colorado, he scored 10 goals, 15 assists, and 25 points in 54 games, a 16-goal, 23-assist, and 38-point pace. It’s based on those seasons that he’s on this list.

Holden has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Rick Nash (Left Wing-61)

7G, 6A, 13 PTS, 48.4 ESCF% in 27 GP

Nash started out having a modest rebound season, on pace to challenge for 30 goals and 50 points but, he’s fallen off a bit, now on pace for 39 points (21G, 18A) in 82 games. It’s a bit of a fall from grace for Nash, who is coming off two straight seasons of failing to reach 40 points. At least he’s become, according to the scouting reports on Sports Forecaster and The Hockey News, an “excellent two-way winger.” He scored a career-high 42 goals and 69 points in 2014/15.

Nash represented Columbus in the 2004, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2011 All-Star Games, and the Rangers in the 2015 All-Star Game.

Brady Skjei (Defenceman-76)

2G, 8A, 10 PTS, 48.3 ESCF% in 27 GP

Skjei is having a sophomore slump by basically all measures, on pace for 30 points (6G, 24A) in 82 games. He is on this list based on his strong rookie season, which saw him score five goals and 39 points and post a 50.38 Corsi% in 80 games.

Skjei has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Pavel Buchnevich (Right Wing-89)

10G, 11A, 21 PTS, 51.9 ESCF% in 27 GP

The Rangers’ use of Buchnevich frustrated fans all season last year. He frequently found himself misused and demoted to the minors. Still, he posted 20 points in 41 games as a rookie. This season, he’s on pace for 63 points (30G, 33A) in 82 games this season.

Buchnevich has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Mika Zibanejad (Centre-93)

11G, 11A, 22 PTS, 53.7 ESCF% in 24 GP

Last season, Zibanejad’s first season in a Rangers sweater, saw him score 37 points in 56 games, a 54-point pace. It would have been a career-high, but looking back, it may not have been bona fide no.1 centre production. That isn’t a problem this season, with Zibanejad scoring at a pace for 72 points (36G, 36A) in 79 games. He will have a career-high if he can return from his concussion.

Zibanejad has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Philadelphia Flyers

Radko Gudas (Defenceman-3)

0G, 2A, 2 PTS, 52.3 ESCF% in 17 GP

The physical, frequently dirty, defenceman is actually a pretty good hockey player. Though his offensive contribution has basically been nonexistent this season, he posts strong Corsi numbers every season and posted a career-high six goals and 23 points last season. This season, he is on pace for eight points (0G, 8A) in 71 games.

Gudas has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Ivan Provorov (Defenceman-9)

4G, 10A, 14 PTS, 47.9 ESCF% in 28 GP

Though he was somewhat overshadowed as a rookie last season, Provorov got off to a strong start to his NHL career with 30 points. Unlike Gostisbehere, Provorov has avoided a sophomore slump and is on pace for 41 points (12G, 29A) in 82 games this season.

Provorov has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Sean Couturier (Centre-14)

14G, 14A, 28 PTS, 52.5 ESCF% in 28 GP

Couturier has been recognized as a top two-way centre for the bulk of his NHL career. After years of being used in a defensive role and posting okay offensive numbers, he’s seeing an expanded role and is on pace for 82 points (41G, 41A) in 82 games.

Couturier has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Wayne Simmonds (Right Wing-17)

9G, 8A, 17 PTS, 44.8 ESCF% in 28 GP

In the past few years, Simmonds has turned into a solid offensive weapon for the Flyers. He is coming off his second 60-point season and his second 30+ goal season. He’s not producing quite as much this season, though he’s still on pace for 49 points (26G, 23A) in 82 games.

Simmonds represented Philadelphia in the 2017 All-Star Game.

Claude Giroux (Centre-28)

11G, 19A, 30 PTS, 52.5 ESCF% in 28 GP

Back in 2011/12 (seems like so long ago), Giroux was among the NHL’s offensive leaders with 93 points. He hasn’t gotten that many since. He scored at a point a game pace in 2012/13, then had seasons of 86, 73, 67, and 58 points in each of the last few seasons. Giroux needed to rebound this season, and to his credit he has. He’s on pace for 88 points (32G, 56A) in 82 games.

Giroux represented Philadelphia in the 2011, 2012, 2015, and 2016 All-Star Games.

Michal Neuvirth (Goaltender-30)

2-5-1, 0.915 Save%, 1 SO in 8 GP

While not generally used as the starting goaltender in Philadelphia, Neuvirth has posted solid numbers at times. He played a career-high 32 games in 2015/16 and posted an also-career-high 0.924 Save%. He is on pace for a 6-15-3 record in 23 games.

Neuvirth has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Brian Elliott (Goaltender-37)

8-6-6, 0.909 Save%, 0 SO in 20 GP

Last season, his only one in Calgary, Elliott played 49 games, the most of his career since before he joined St. Louis in 2011. He recovered from a weak start to the season to finish with an okay 0.910 Save%. Though his numbers this season are weaker than Neuvirth’s, he’s been getting the lion’s share of the starts. He’s on pace for a 23-18-18 record in 62 games.

Elliott represented St. Louis in the 2012 and 2015 All-Star Games.

Valtteri Filppula (Centre-51)

7G, 7A, 14 PTS, 47.1 ESCF% in 28 GP

Filppula ended up with 43 points as he was traded from Tampa Bay to Philadelphia last season. That, and the 42 points (21G, 21A) he’s on pace for this season are as much as or more than he scored in most of his seasons with Detroit. Back in 2013/14, Filppula filled in as Tampa Bay’s no.1 centre while Steven Stamkos was injured, scoring 58 points. Two years earlier, he scored a career-high 66 points for Detroit.

Filppula has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Shayne Gostisbehere (Defenceman-53)

3G, 17A, 20 PTS, 49.4 ESCF% in 25 GP

Gostisbehere scored 17 goals and 46 points in 64 games as a rookie in 2015/16, finishing as a finalist for the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year. While he had a down year last season, he still had a respectable 39 points. He is on pace for 63 points (9G, 54A) in 79 games this season.

Gostisbehere has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Jakub Voracek (Right Wing-93)

7G, 27A, 34 PTS, 51.8 ESCF% in 28 GP

While it wasn’t anywhere near the 81 points he scored in 2014/15, Voracek rebounded last season from 55 to 61 points. This season he’s on pace for 100 points (21G, 79A) in 82 games.

Voracek represented Philadelphia in the 2015 All-Star Game.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Olli Maatta (Defenceman-3)

2G, 11A, 13 PTS, 50.8 ESCF% in 29 GP

After years of varying degrees of disappointment as a former first-round pick, Maatta is finally making good on his promise. He hasn’t posted a good Corsi number since 2012, but is on pace for 37 points (6G, 31A) in 82 games this season.

Maatta has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Justin Schultz (Defenceman-4)

2G, 8A, 10 PTS, 50.8 ESCF% in 23 GP

This season, Schultz is back to where he’s usually at in his career production-wise. He’s on pace for 33 points (7G, 26A) in 76 games. Last season, on the other hand, he scored 12 goals and 51 points.

Schultz has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Brian Dumoulin (Defenceman-8)

1G, 1A, 2 PTS, 51.5 ESCF% in 29 GP

Last season, Dumoulin finished with one goal and 15 points. It was one fewer point than the previous season, but one more goal. While he’s clearly not impressing anybody with his point production, on pace for six points (3G, 3A) in 82 games, he’s posted very strong Corsi numbers in each of his last two seasons.

Dumoulin has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Bryan Rust (Right Wing-17)

4G, 11A, 15 PTS, 53.6 ESCF% in 29 GP

Not quite an All-Star offensive performer, Rust scored 28 points in 57 games, a 40-point pace, last season. He scored nine points in each of his two playoff appearances, and is on pace for over 40 points this season. This season, he is on pace for 42 points (11G, 31A) in 82 games.

Rust has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Ian Cole (Defenceman-28)

1G, 3A, 4 PTS, 51.9 ESCF% in 23 GP

For a defensive-oriented defenceman averaging under 20 minutes a night, Cole had some pretty good numbers last season. He did post a weak Corsi%, from which he’s recovering this season, but finished with 26 points. He is on pace this season for 13 points (3G, 10A) in 76 games.

Cole has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Matt Murray (Goaltender-30)

11-7-1, 0.906 Save%, 1 SO in 21 GP

Murray missed a handful of games last season with injury, including a sizeable (and the most important) chunk of the 2017 playoffs, but played the bulk of the regular season games, posting a 0.923 Save%. And it’s not like he hasn’t had an impact when he’s needed to in the postseason. He may have missed the Final series last season, but the year before he Cam Warded the Pens to the first Stanley Cup of their current streak. He is on pace for a 31-20-3 record in 59 games.

Murray has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Conor Sheary (Left Wing-43)

9G, 4A, 13 PTS, 49.4 ESCF% in 29 GP

The small undrafted winger may have started his NHL career off with only 10 points in 44 games, but he’s improved greatly since then. Last season, he scored 23 goals and 53 points in 61 games last season, a 31-goal 71-point pace. His production is down overall this year, on pace for only 36 points (25G, 11A) in 82 games, but he is still on pace for about 30 goals.

Sheary has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Kris Letang (Defenceman-58)

1G, 20A, 21 PTS, 51.5 ESCF% in 29 GP

Last season saw another of Letang’s disappearing acts. This time, he missed half the regular season overall, and missed the last quarter and change of the regular season and the entire postseason with a neck injury. Still, when he was on, he was on, scoring at a 68-point pace. The year before, he scored 67 points in 71 games, a 77-point pace. This year, he is on pace for 60 points (3G, 57A) in 82 games.

Letang represented Pittsburgh in the 2011, 2012, and 2016 All-Star Games.

Jake Guentzel (Left Wing-59)

12G, 8A, 20 PTS, 53.0 ESCF% in 29 GP

Guentzel was called up to the big club roughly halfway through the regular season and stayed up thanks to a strong rookie performance. He scored 16 goals, 17 assists, and 33 points in 40 games, a 33-goal, 35-assist, 68-point pace. This season, either due to cooling off to more reasonable expectations or because of a sophomore slump, Guentzel is having a down year but is still on pace for 57 points (34G, 23A) in 82 games.

Guentzel has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Carl Hagelin (Left Wing-62)

2G, 2A, 4 PTS, 53.5 ESCF% in 28 GP

Hagelin scored only 22 points in 61 games, a 30-point pace, last season, and is on pace for even less this season, 12 points (6G, 6A) in 81 games. However, the year before, he scored 27 points in 37 games, a 60-point pace, after his acquisition from Anaheim and formed the HBK line with Nick Bonino (now with Nashville) and Phil Kessel (below).

Hagelin has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Evgeni Malkin (Centre-71)

8G, 17A, 25 PTS, 52.0 ESCF% in 25 GP

There was much outrage when the NHL revealed its full list of the top 100 players of all time and Malkin wasn’t on the list. He may have been injured for chunks of each of his last few seasons, but he’s been great when he’s been playing. In each of his post-lockout seasons, from least to most recent and with 82-game prorated total in parentheses, he’s had 33 points in 31 games (87 points), 72 in 60 (98 points), 70 in 69 (83), 58 in 57 (84), and 72 in 62 (95). In his last season mostly unencumbered by injuries or lockouts, he scored 50 goals and 109 points in 75 games, a 55-goal and 119-point pace. He’s also more fan friendly. He actually attends All-Star Games when he can. He is on pace for 78 points (25G, 53A) in 78 games.

Malkin represented Pittsburgh in the 2008, 2009, 2012, and 2016 All-Star Games.

Patric Hornqvist (Right Wing-72)

11G, 9A, 20 PTS, 52.4 ESCF% in 26 GP

Prior to the addition of Phil Kessel, Hornqvist was the guy brought in to be Sidney Crosby’s winger. He began his stint with Pittsburgh with back-to-back 51-point seasons. Last season, he scored 44 points in 70 games, a 52-point pace. This season, he’s on pace for 60 points (33G, 27A) in 79 games.

Hornqvist has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Phil Kessel (Right Wing-81)

13G, 21A, 34 PTS, 52.4 ESCF% in 29 GP

Prior to joining the Pens, Kessel had five straight 30+ goal non-lockout seasons and a 25-goal season. Expected to reach the 50-goal plateau now that Crosby would be dishing him pucks, he has instead been the one doing the dishing. He scored 23 goals and 70 points last season. There is some good news this season. Kessel is on pace for 96 points (37G, 59A) in 82 games.

Kessel represented Toronto in the 2011, 2012, and 2015 All-Star Games.

Sidney Crosby (Centre-87)

12G, 17A, 29 PTS, 52.7 ESCF% in 29 GP

Last season, Crosby scored 44 goals and 89 points in 75 games, a 48-goal and 98-point pace. Even if it’s disappointing to see 44 goals win a player the Rocket Richard, as it did for Crosby, winning the Rocket Richard at all is an impressive feat. He scored 85 and 84 points in the prior two seasons, and 104 the year before that. He is on pace for 82 points (34G, 48A) in 82 games this season.

Crosby represented Pittsburgh in the 2007 and 2017 All-Star Games.

Washington Capitals

Matt Niskanen (Defenceman-2)

0G, 6A, 6 PTS, 48.8 ESCF% in 16 GP

Niskanen just recently came back from an injury and is off to a slow start offensively, but Niskanen has three solid seasons with Washington under his belt, along with a couple other good seasons. His 46 points in 2013/14, attained while filling in for an injured Kris Letang, were the first time he’d scored 30 in a season since he had 35 for Dallas in 2008/09. With Washington, he’s finished with 31, 32, and most recently 39 points. He is on pace for 26 points (0G, 26A) in 69 games.

Niskanen has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Alex Ovechkin (Left Wing-8)

32G, 11A, 32 PTS, 49.2 ESCF% in 29 GP

After Ovechkin went from 51 goals and 71 points in 2015/16 to 33 goals and 69 points last season, people were speculating that he was in decline. But you never count out Ovechkin. One of the modern era’s best goal scorers, Ovechkin is on pace for 90 points (58G, 31A) in 82 games.

Ovechkin represented Washington in the 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2015, and 2017 All-Star Games.

Dmitry Orlov (Defenceman-9)

2G, 7A, 9 PTS, 50.8 ESCF% in 29 GP

Orlov has had a couple pretty good seasons prior to this one. While this season hasn’t gone great offensively for Orlov, with Orlov only scoring on pace for 26 points (6G, 20A) in 82 games, he finished his last two seasons with 29 and 33 points respectively.

Orlov has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Nicklas Backstrom (Centre-19)

4G, 19A, 23 PTS, 51.2 ESCF% in 28 GP

Backstrom is having a down year this season, on pace for 67 points (12G, 55A) in 81 games. His recent career is All-Star worthy though. He had three straight seasons between 70 and 79 points prior to last season, when he scored 86 points.

Backstrom represented Washington in the 2009 and 2016 All-Star Games.

Lars Eller (Centre-20)

4G, 9A, 13 PTS, 48.4 ESCF% in 28 GP

Never a big point producer, Eller reached 30 points, a career-high and his only 30-point season, in the lockout-shortened 2012/13 season. Eller is on this list for his noteworthy, if tentative, offensive breakout. He is on pace for 38 points (12G, 26A) in 81 games.

Eller has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Braden Holtby (Goaltender-70)

15-6-0, 0.921 Save%, 0 SO in 21 GP

Holtby is one of the top goaltenders in the NHL. He’s a workhorse and posts elite numbers. Two seasons ago, he won a career-high 48 games and a Vezina Trophy. Last season, he posted a 0.925 Save%, his highest as a starting goaltender. This season, he’s on pace for a 42-17-0 record in 59 games.

Holtby represented Washington in the 2016 and 2017 All-Star Games.

John Carlson (Defenceman-74)

2G, 20A, 22 PTS, 48.6 ESCF% in 29 GP

Back in 2014/15, Carlson scored 55 points for the Capitals. The following year, he scored 39 points in 56 games, a 57-point pace. Last season was a down year for Carlson, who scored 37 points in 72 games, a 42-point pace. While his Corsi numbers aren’t great, he is a solid point-producing defenceman, and is on pace for 63 points (6G, 57A) in 82 games.

Carlson has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

TJ Oshie (Right Wing-77)

10G, 13A, 23 PTS, 52.3 ESCF% in 28 GP

I bet, even nearly four years later, Oshie’s name is enough to jog memories of that 2014 shootout attempt, when Team USA, freed by the IIHF’s less strict shootout rules, sent Oshie out again and again to break a tie in a shootout, outshooting Pavel Datsyuk and Ilya Kovalchuk to win that game. Obviously he’s done plenty since then though. He finished with 60 points that year in 79 games, a 62-point pace. He scored 55 points in 72 games, a 62-point pace, the following year. After a down year in his first season with Washington, he rebounded with 33 goals and 56 points in 68 games, a 40-goal and 67-point pace. You read that correctly, he scored as many goals as Ovechkin did in 14 fewer games than Ovechkin did. This season, he’s on pace for 67 points (29G, 38A) in 81 games.

Oshie has never appeared in an All-Star Game.

Evgeny Kuznetsov (Centre-92)

10G, 21A, 31 PTS, 47.5 ESCF% in 29 GP

As a sophomore, Kuznetsov led the Capitals with 77 points. Last season, he scored a still respectable, but not quite as great, 59 points. He’s bouncing back this season, and is on pace for 87 points (28G, 59A) in 82 games.

Kuznetsov represented Washington in the 2016 All-Star Game.

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