Kovalchuk named to First All-Star Team
First-time honor follows outstanding 2011-12 campaign
Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin and Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber have been voted to the First All-Star Team for the third and second time, respectively, as the National Hockey League released voting results for its postseason All-Star Teams on Wednesday night.Joining Malkin and Weber are four first-time First Team All-Stars: New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson, New Jersey Devils left wing Ilya Kovalchuk and Penguins right wing James Neal.
Kovalchuk's 83 points were fifth-best during the regular season. He ranked sixth overall with 37 goals.
Among those named to the Second Team is Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos, repeating Second Team honors from 2011 after tallying a League-leading and career-high 60 goals. Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara is a postseason All-Star for the sixth time, adding a fourth Second Team berth to his pair of First Team nominations.
Stamkos and Chara are joined on the Second Team by four players who have earned postseason All-Star honors for the first time: Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick, St. Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo, Phoenix Coyotes left wing Ray Whitney and New York Rangers right wing Marian Gaborik.
Voting for the All-Star Team is conducted among representatives of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association at the end of the regular season.