Penguins’ coalition ousts Canadiens

Thanks to a surge by Penguins fans at the digital ballot box, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin now rank 1-2 in fan voting to start at forward for the Eastern Conference in the NHL All-Star Game Jan. 25 in Montreal.

As of Wednesday morning, Crosby is the top vote-getter among all NHL players and leads Eastern Conference forwards with 638,945 votes. Malkin is second with 567,371, and Saku Koivu of the Montreal Canadiens is third with 560,973. The top three vote-getters will start at forward for the East.

Just one week ago, Crosby and Malkin were fourth and fifth in the voting, trailing three Montreal players. Canadiens players were staked to large early voting leads at all six Eastern Conference positions.