Jaromir Jagr of the Florida Panthers, Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks, Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and John Scott of the Arizona Coyotes have been selected as captains for the 2016 All-Star Game in Nashville, the NHL announced on Saturday.
They are the first four players to secure roster spots for the All-Star Game thanks to the new All-Star Fan Vote, which the league introduced this season.
Fans voted from Dec. 1 to Jan. 1 to determine the four All-Star captains who will lead their respective divisions into the new three-game, three-on-three tournament format.
According to a press release from the league, fans were permitted to select as few as one player and a maximum of four players per ballot, without regard to position. The maximum number of ballots cast per day for each user was 10.
Scott led the Pacific Division throughout the voting process. The Coyotes enforcer, who is in his seventh year in the NHL, has played in 11 games this season, recording one assist and 25 penalty minutes.
“It’s a fun little thing and hopefully it’ll die down over time,” Scott told AZCentral.com when fan voting first opened. “It’s not something -- I definitely don’t want to be voted into the All-Star Game. It would be cool, but I definitely don’t deserve it to this point. You never know. There’s still some time left. I could turn it on.”
Jagr, a 21-year-veteran who recently recorded the 732nd goal of his career to become the fourth-highest scorer in NHL history, took to Twitter in early December telling fans he appreciated the votes, but the new format would “kill him.” The Panthers forward has now made 13 All-Star teams so far in his career, and has 11 goals and 15 assists this season.
Fans-I was afraid,that 3on3 all-Star game may kill me,now,I am more afraid,fighting John Scott 6,8 300 during All-Star, kill me for sure— Jaromir Jagr (@68Jagr) January 2, 2016
Entering Saturday, Kane leads the league in points with 56, and his 23 goals have him tied for second with Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin. Ovechkin has tallied 21 goals and 13 assists so far this season.
The remaining 40 players that will fill out the remaining spots on the All-Star Game rosters will be determined by the NHL hockey operations department and announced on Jan. 6.
The 2016 All-Star game is set for 5 p.m. ET on Jan. 31 at Bridgestone Arena.
- Beth Maiman