In another brilliant move by the NHL, the league has left the Columbus Blue Jackets best player this year, Cam Atkinson, off the list of captain voting for the All-Star game.
The NHL All-Star game is fine. It’s not great but it’s not as bad as the other leagues All-Star activities. The skills competition is great and the 3-on-3 tournament is fine as well. The league allows fans to vote for the captain of each division’s team ahead of time and this year the Columbus Blue Jackets have four players listed on the pre-loaded list of choices for fans to chose from. In another mind-boggling move though the league has left off the best Jacket this season from the list, Cam Atkinson.
The league has instead put four other Columbus Blue Jackets players as options to vote for that, although we love, haven’t had as good as a season as Cam. Atkinson already has 19 goals this year, tied with Connor McDavid for 12th in the league. He has another 15 assists on top of his incredible goal number for an impressive point per game pace.
Instead of Cam as a pre-loaded option though the league has put Seth Jones, Nick Foligno, Sergei Bobrovsky, and Artemi Panarin as choices from the CBJ. You seriously have to question if anyone at the NHL has even seen a Jackets game this year when these four are selected but not Cam.
Numbers wise, Cam has outpaced the other skaters. Neither Jones or Foligno have even broke the 20 point mark yet this year! Nothing like the feeling of voting for a guy that has nine assists in 32 games played.
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Panarin has been good this year and is a fringe All-Star but the situation is a bit tense between Panarin, the organization and fans right now. What makes the NHL think that there will be a ton of fan engagement on his behalf?
Bob has been nowhere near All-Star worthy either. Nothing like a .905 save percentage to get the fans pumped up to vote for a guy right NHL?
Cam has done nothing but dominate all year. He is clearly the Jackets best player and should be an option for fans to vote on. This activity is all about encouraging fan engagement and these options the NHL gave Jackets fans will do nothing to encourage engagement. Sure, you can scroll all the way to the bottom and type out Cam’s name and vote for him (which I did) but Cam is such an obvious choice that manually inputting his name just made me more mad.
Although it is very unlikely Cam would ever have won the vote with players like Alex Ovechkin and Sidney Crosby in the Division, the unbelievable oversight by the league in not including a top ten goal scorer in the league is pathetic and downright disrespectful to Cam.
The league should be ashamed of itself and Jackets fans should do everything they can, including voting as much as possible, to try and get Cam to be a captain this year.