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by Fitzgerald Cecilio
New York, NY
Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has been selected to this year's NHL All-Star twice, as first team right wing and second team left wing as voted by the Professional Hockey Writers Association.
Ovechkin became the second player in League history to be named an All-Star at multiple positions, joining Mark Messier, who was named to the squad twice as a left wing (1980-81, 1981-82) and twice as a center (1989-90, 1991-92).
PHWA president Kevin Allen of USA Today said members were told to vote for Ovechkin on the right wing, the position he played in the vast majority of his games this season.
"However, 45 of our members chose to vote for him on the left wing, the position he had played for many years. It is also the position listed for him on NHL.com," Allen said.
"We are troubled by the all-star voting results, and plan to take a closer look at the events that led to Ovechkin winning All-Star acclaim at two positions. We know we got this wrong, and our objective is to make sure it never happens again," he added.
The confusion started when Ovechkin, a left wing for the first seven years of his NHL career, was shifted to right wing by coach Adam Oates.
The switch worked wonders for Ovechkin as he regained his deadly form by mid-season, earning him his third Hart Memorial Trophy, given to the NHL's most valuable player. He also led the league in scoring with 32 goals.
Joining Ovechkin on the First-Team All-Star are Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby, who received the honor for the second time., Penguins left wing Chris Kunitz, defensemen P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens and Ryan Suter of the Minnesota Wild, and Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky.
Jonathan Toews, captain of the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks, was named the center of the Second All-Star team. He tied for the team lead with 23 goals and was second with 48 points. He also had a team-best plus-28 rating while playing the second-most minutes of any forward on his team.
Joining Toews on the Second All-Star Team are New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, defensemen Francois Beauchemin of the Anaheim Ducks and Kris Letang of the Penguins, right wing Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning, and Ovechkin at left wing.
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"Capitals Captain Alex Ovechkin named All-Star Twice"