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Habs fans, get ready to exercise your right to vote

Interesting news out of Montreal today, as Bell Canada and the Montreal Canadiens have combined forces to allow Canadiens fans to vote for the three stars of each game. The longstanding tradition was to have a member of the media select the three stars, and while their choices were often debated, I’m not sure having the fans select the three stars is the best way to go.

Why could this be a bad idea? Well, Canadiens fans stuffed the ballots for the all star game two years ago, selecting players who did not deserve to be there, let alone in the starting lineup (that’s right Mike Komisarek, I’m talking about you). Now, we may see a repeat of that after every game at the Bell Centre.

Certainly, this is a great way to involve the fans. An app for voting will be available on Blackberry and Android phones as of tomorrow; an iPhone app follows later this month. It really is great to see the NHL embracing new technology and trying to engage its fan base. For that, I applaud the Montreal Canadiens (and Bell, despite my phone bill last month).

However, the results could clearly be skewed by fans pulling together to vote for favourites. The one place the voting will have a lasting impact? Each three star selection counts towards the Molson Cup, a monthly trophy awarded by the Montreal Canadiens. The winner at the end of the year is then awarded the title of Habs player of the year.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: fan+voting

Comments

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Is it only fans attending the game who have the ability to vote, or does it apply to everyone?

I don’t think this will have the same impact as the All-Star Game voting situation from a few years ago, as this is a Canadiens only ballot. It’s also on a per game basis.

At the end of the day, if you’re going to empower your fan base like this, you are ultimately holding them responsible for the results. I think fans will be responsible and vote for the appropriate players after each game. I like this initiative.

Posted by Briney on 10/12/10 at 05:33 PM ET

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FWIW, a fan base that vociferously demands a penalty virtually any time a Canadien player is touched and which at times in the playoffs last year even seemed to boo obvious icing calls shouldn’t be counted on to vote for too many opposing players, I wouldn’t think.

Though, given that the three stars are mainly important to the fans, anyway, what the hey.

Posted by Lex Talionis on 10/12/10 at 06:32 PM ET

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The voting is open to anyone with a cell phone. So those watching at home, or following online, anyone can vote.

I have to believe that the days of opposing players getting first star are over. The other way this may come into play is if a player is being bullied a la Patrice Brisebois years ago - he could play his heart out and still won’t get recognized.

Does any of it really matter? Probably not. But they have certainly taken a step towards empowering the fan base, and if it is popular I could see other teams adopting the same model very quickly.

Posted by The Upper Canadien from Toronto on 10/12/10 at 06:39 PM ET

Da lil Guy's avatar

So do the texts cost anything?

If so, do the proceeds go to charity or into the pockets of the owners/phone companies?

Posted by Da lil Guy from Guelph, Ontario on 10/12/10 at 06:56 PM ET

Viqsi's avatar

I have to believe that the days of opposing players getting first star are over.

First? I’d imagine the days of opposing plays getting any star are over.

Posted by Viqsi on 10/12/10 at 07:27 PM ET

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Apparently, voting will be free. And the app is supposed to be free as well.

For those who haven’t seen it, the press release was posted earlier by Paul:

http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.php/hockey/comments/tonights_three_stars_have_been_selected_by_you/

Posted by The Upper Canadien from Toronto on 10/12/10 at 08:20 PM ET

Da lil Guy's avatar

Great.

Can’t wait to see the first headline about how Mathieu Darche got screwed over by ‘money and the ethnic vote’.

Posted by Da lil Guy from Guelph, Ontario on 10/13/10 at 12:23 AM ET

landsharkhockey's avatar

Who cares if the fans stuff the ballot?  It’s not like the 3-star mean anything to anyone other than the fans, particularly the home fans.  If you’re watching your team in an away game on TV, do you even know who the 3 stars are?  It’s a nice cap for home fans in the arena, so let the fans do the voting.  I say the NHL should adopt this policy for all teams. 

While we’re at it, how about some fan say in the Conn Smythe voting???

Posted by landsharkhockey on 10/13/10 at 10:16 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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