The list of the 12 top players due to take part in KHL’s All-Star Game has been revealed and this year the opening lines look more like the world’s cream of the crop.
As it happened last season the All-Star Game will be held in the format East vs. West. The two squads will comprise 20 field players and two goalies each.
By tradition, the starting line ups have been chosen by means of online voting, as Urals-born Evgeny Malkin gained the most votes (40,569) beating the second most popular player Pavel Datsyuk by almost 7,000.
The fans’ choice is as follows:
Goalie: Semen Varlamov (Lokomotiv)
Defense: Zdeno Chara (Lev) and Aleksandr Ryazantsev (Severstal)
Forwards: Aleksandr Ovechkin (Dynamo Moscow), Pavel Datsyuk (CSKA) and Ilya Kovalchuk (SKA)
Goalie: Michael Garnett (Traktor)
Defense: Ilya Nikulin (Ak Bars) and Sergey Gonchar (Metallurg Magnitogorsk)
Forwards: Evgeny Kuznetsov (Traktor), Evgeny Malkin (Metallurg Magnitogorsk) and Sergey Kostitsyn (Avangard)
The remaining roster will be decided later by journalists, while the two captains will be voted on prior to the game.
The All-Star week-end will take place in Chelyabinsk, Southern Urals, on January 12-13.