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My All-Star Ballot: Eastern Conference Defensemen

by Photo of Andrew Wallach

Which Eastern Conference Defensemen are most deserving of a spot in the 2015 All Star Game?

My All-Star Ballot: Eastern Conference Defensemen

With the 2015 NHL All-Star Game a month away and the league fresh off its Christmas hiatus, I think it's a good time to look at this year's prospective all-stars. There will be 21 players selected from each conference: 12 forwards, six defensemen, and three goalies. I will do a six-part series, analyzing each group from both conferences. Remember, this is not a definitive list of who will make the all-star team, just my ballot for all it's worth.

Note: Statistics are through the games played Tuesday, December 23rd.

Here are my Eastern Conference Defensemen:

John Carlson, Washington Capitals

Third in the league in both assists and points by a defenseman, Carlson has been the best of Washington's three right-handed defensemen. Despite learning a new system under coach Barry Trotz, Carlson is having a career year and deserves all-star recognition.

P.K. Subban, Montreal Canadiens

With a new contract and his long-term future secured in Montreal, there is less noise surrounding Subban and his teammates compared to last season. One thing that hasn't changed is his offensive production. He has eight goals and 23 points while averaging over 25 minutes per game for Montreal as they go into the break tied atop the Atlantic Division.

Kris Letang, Pittsburgh Penguins

Letang suffered a stroke last season that threatened his life let alone his playing career. Less than a year later, Letang is back to his old tricks, recording 23 points through the Pens' first 34 games. He's playing over 25 minutes per game and anchoring a young defense for the Metropolitan Division leaders.

Erik Karlsson, Ottawa Senators

It's been a disappointing season in Ottawa during Karlsson's first year as captain. The team's poor play hasn't stopped him from producing, though. He's recorded 23 points in the first 34 games and is third in the league averaging over 27 minutes played per game. 

Justin Faulk, Carolina Hurricanes

With as bad as the 'Canes have been so far this season, its almost surprising to see Faulk among the top 25 in defenseman scoring. He's recorded 20 points in 34 games for the Eastern Conference bottom dwellers. Faulk wont have too much to take away from this season, but he deserves a spot amongst the best in the league at the All-Star game this year.

Aaron Ekblad, Florida Panthers

It's not often that you see a rookie defenseman in the All-Star game. Ekblad has been that good. Through the first 32 games he has five goals and 19 points, impressive stats for a first-year player. Ekblad has averaged over 22 minutes played per game and is one reason for Florida's resurgence this season. If anyone can give Filip Forsberg a run for the Calder Trophy, Ekblad would appear to be that person.

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