For some bizarre reason, Sergei Gonchar was left off the All-Star ballot.
Gonchar is tied for first among defenders with 19 points in 20 games. He has also finished in the top-10 for defensive scoring in each of the past four seasons. In a further slap to the face, teammate Ryan Whitney is on the ballot despite the fact that he finished with eight less points than Gonchar last season. The fan balloting only determines the starting five skates for each conference. The rest of the roster is filled out by the coaches.Jordan Staal continues to suffer from a terrible case of the sophomore slump.
He has notched just a goal and an assist in 20 games this season, including a current 13-game scoring drought. "Obviously, my confidence isn't at its peak," he said. "I don't want to take risks sometimes, when maybe that's the best play. I have to go to the net, try beating guys one-on-one down low and moving my feet down there. If I do that, I'll create more chances and hopefully get on a roll." Staal will return to usual position of center, between Gary Roberts and Tyler Kennedy for Wednesday night.rotoworldMaxime Talbot will miss at least three games due to a high ankle sprain.
"He was playing well for us," coach Michel Therrien said. "He brings a lot of energy to the team. He's a little warrior. ... For sure, we're going to miss him." Talbot was hurt back on Nov. 3, but played through the pain until 'tweaking' the injury on Monday at practice.