PenguinsExperience.com - A Pittsburgh Penguins Blog © 2009
Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Boycott the NHL All-Star Game

EDIT: Many people have asked whether or not the fact that Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are now the leading vote-getters in the Eastern Conference will affect this boycott. It will not.

The boycott has nothing to do with certain players making or not making the team. This boycott was organized in response to the horribly amateur way the NHL has handled the NHL All-Star Game fan balloting since the beginning. The league's handling of the situation has not changed.

Check out http://boycott.penguinsexperience.com for more information on the boycott.


Here is the original post from November 26th, 2008:

The Montreal Canadiens are running away with the votes for the Eastern Conference All-Star team. At first glance it would appear that the team's dedicated fan base has come out to support their team.

This is not true.

Two weeks ago a poster at The Pensblog discovered a voting javascript posted on the Montreal Canadiens official message board.

Shortly afterwards the CBC reported that "the NHL is investigating a suspicious spike in votes for Montreal Canadiens players in all-star fan balloting."

NHL spokesman Gary Meaghar told CBC that "there is some indication that something has happened" and people assumed that the skewed results, caused by small group of cheaters who were ruining the online All-Star ballot for everyone, would be fixed.

This did not happen.

Many expected that the NHL would at least firmly admit that something unfair had taken place, but would not adjust the votes.

This did not happen.

What did happen was that the NHL issued a press release stating that "Montreal fans continue to show the rest of North America how XM NHL® All-Star Fan Balloting presented by 2K Sports is done" and applauded their efforts. They're attempting to ignore the issue and cover it up with positive spin.

In response, we have decided to boycott the NHL All-Star Game.


We will not watch the NHL All-Star Game until the NHL formally admits that tampering has taken place. We do not wish to see any votes thrown out as the invalid votes are likely impossible to detect at this point. We do not wish to see the votes adjusted. We have no problem with the Eastern Conference All-Star team being made up entirely of Montreal Canadiens players. The problem we have is with the way the NHL has chosen to sweep this issue under the rug and pretend that nothing improper has happened.

The official All-Star Fan Balloting rules state "Automatic, programmed, scripted and/or robotic votes or Promotion entries are not permitted." Yet, when the NHL is presented with proof that the results are due to automatic voting and when a spokesperson for the league states that it is very likely that automatic voting took place, the NHL waits and then tries to spin this situation into a positive one.

The automatic voting has stopped since the installation of a captcha and a one-vote-per-minute voting rule, but all this has done is make the Canadiens' players' leads insurmountable. It is irresponsible, and just plain bad business, that the NHL set up an online vote without installing any sort of features that would prevent automated voting.

This situation makes the NHL as a whole look bad.

And so today we are calling on you to join us. Boycott the NHL All-Star Game.

If you are a fan of any NHL team and you feel that the way this has been handled is insulting and irresponsible, join us.

Canadiens fans who do not want to see their team branded as "cheaters" due to the actions of a very small portion of the team's fan base, join us.

Anyone who is upset with how the NHL continues to run the league as a second-rate organization, join us.

Let us state again that we do not want to see the votes changed.

We have no problem with all six Canadiens being voted onto the team.

Having six Canadiens voted onto the All-Star team during the franchise's 100th season would, quite frankly, be amazing. We just wish the votes would have been recorded legitimately.

Our issue is with the NHL and how they have handled the situation.

Of course, the NHL could make things right. They could admit that there was an error. They could publicly state that some votes were made automatically but that nothing can be done at this point. All they have to do is admit that there was a mistake and we will watch the All-Star game.

Until they do, we will encourage others to join our boycott.

Please, if you agree with our points stated above, boycott the NHL All-Star Game.

Join our Facebook group to support the cause.

Spread this message to everyone you know.

Perhaps with a little dedication we can make the NHL see what they have done wrong.

Perhaps we can restore the reputation of the NHL, the All-Star Game, and the Montreal Canadiens.

78 comments:

tecmo said...

DO IT.

Go Pens

Anonymous said...

Pretty sure you wouldn't be complaining if the vote leaders were Malkin/Crosby/Gonchar/Whitney/Fleury

Anonymous said...

If Gonchar and Whitney are among the vote leaders, us Penguins fans would not agree with that either, dummy..

Anonymous said...

Considering all the help that the officials and the league give the pens on the ice, I would think pens fans would be the last ones to draw attention to the fact that the NHL is corrupt.

Anonymous said...

"Considering all the help that the officials and the league give the pens on the ice, I would think pens fans would be the last ones to draw attention to the fact that the NHL is corrupt."

One of the dumbest comments I have ever seen.

The NHL should have closed voting and reset it. It should have started back at 0. Crosby and Malkin will get in regardless, but do Koivu and Kovalev deserve it over guys like Semin? No.

PenguinsExperience.com said...

Gonchar and Whitney shouldn't even be on the ballot, let alone receive any votes.

This is not an anti-Habs movement. It's simply ridiculous that the NHL instituted a voting system that was so easily manipulated by a small group of people. It's insulting that they pretended like there was no issue when there is proof that there was. A league that can't even manage to run online voting does not deserve to be watched.

This movement is to send a message to the NHL that the fans will not accept this sort of mediocrity from the league.

Anonymous said...

Lame attempt at trying to boost your own ego. No one cares if you don't watch the All Star game. No one watches it to begin with.

Cameron Frye said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cameron Frye said...

sorry, let me try this again. i do the bruins blog for comcast sports net - i'm going mention your push for the boycott....we're pissed in boston about tim thomas is getting the shaft, so i'm sure they might hop on the bandwagon. shot me an email if your want!

cameronjfrye@gmail.com

PenguinsExperience.com said...

"Lame attempt at trying to boost your own ego. No one cares if you don't watch the All Star game. No one watches it to begin with."

And yet here you are posting about it...

No one cares if I don't watch the game, you're right.
But people will care if thousands don't watch the game, which is the aim here.

Thanks for visiting.

Anonymous said...

"One of the dumbest comments I have ever seen."
So, you say it's a dumb comment, but you can't prove that it's untrue can you.
I know this is a bad place to make an anti-pens comment since this is the place where pens fans stroke each other to make themselves feel better about their team. But on the other hand, it seems to be a great place to comment on the hypocrisy of a group that cries foul only when it goes against THEM and not when they are the ones on the receiving the benefits. This league has an agenda and lucky for the pens fans, they are on the high side of it. Live with the outrage, it doesn't change the facts.

Anonymous said...

@PE.com

Sadly Wyshynski linked to here. The only reason I posted is because this is the most boneheaded concept of a "boycott" I've seen, and it truly is just an attempt to drive traffic to your site. The people who want to watch it will watch it, and the people who never do, won't. Why do I get the feeling you will be watching it yourself, along with other Pens fans sucking at the teet of one Crosby.

No offense.

Sort of.

Anonymous said...

And no, I'm not a Montreal fan. It really doesn't matter who gets "selected" because it's nothing more than a staring lineup. They're on for 45 seconds and then pushed to the fourth line where they belong.

And I'm not going to QQ just because my precious Crosby isn't taking the puck drop in a no-check pussyfoot game.

Seriously, get a hold of yourself. You could have stuffed the joke of a ballot box instead of investing your time with this crap if it really mattered so much to you.

Anonymous said...

Montreal has massive support despite the alleged auto-voting:

1. The entire city of Montreal is focused on its hockey team. Most American are far less passionate about their hockey team and rank hockey well below football, basketball and baseball.

2. Every time Montreal plays an away game, count the habs jerseys in the crowd, the fan base is huge and very widespread.

3. There are billboards and very heavy advertising for this in magazines, websites, etc.

4. It is really Montreal's year, with the All Star game, the draft, the centennial etc. It's no wonder that voters have focused on habs players.

5. Traditionally most teams that host the All Star Game garner huge support for their players.

6. The NHL is looking into it and released a statment Nov 14 and are currently validating votes. Montreal will still have large support when it is all said and done, and Pittsburgh bloggers will still get their panties in a twist.

Anonymous said...

Why is everyone getting all upset? Its an all-star game, not a Cup Final! Yes there was bot voting, but its impossible to say by how much. Its the 100th anniversary, and few towns are top to bottom crazy about there team as Montreal. TO has more fans, but its a bigger city and you'll find more people who don't care about hockey in TO than you will in Montreal. Koivu deserves to be an all star every year for even playing NHL after all he's been through. Didn't hear anyone calling for a boycott when Nilan was sent to the all star game.

Anonymous said...

Plus, the All Star game is about the FANS, not players. Theres not a single player in the league that will give a rats ass about sending an all Habs line out to start the game.Cros, Malk, Ovie, et al will STILL be there. Its a special year in Montreal and the wide spread fanbase of Les Habs is coming out in force to make it a Montreal year. Every other team in the league wishes it had as passionate and driven fanbase as Montreal. Leafs fans are just pissed they didn't think of it first.

Anonymous said...

"Every other team in the league wishes it had as passionate and driven fanbase as Montreal."
Why would ANY other team want to have a fanbase that believes so little in their team that they need to cheat to get into the All-Star game...its really sad and pathetic and the team itself should be ashamed of the city they play in. Add a little more hypocrisy, can you imagine how loud the habs fans would've cried if it was any other team doing something this foul.

Life_As_A_Redhead said...

Guys, I HAVE voted for a Habs player!!!! and I'm still insulted by this.

It has NOTHING to do with the Canadians winning the spots, It has to do with the irresponsible way the NHL has acted about the whole thing.

Tom Alexander said...

If the Habs want to see their boys get slaughtered by the best of the West, so be it. Final score: East- 1 West- 18

PenguinsExperience.com said...

Life_As_A_Redhead, that's the point exactly, thank you.

If Habs made up the entire team it wouldn't be an issue as long as they were voted in according to the rules.
The fact that the NHL not only ignored cheating (which I'm sure happened for more than just Habs players) and instead applauded it is the problem.

Anonymous said...

I suppose you better report Penguin auto-votes as well then -- see skatkat86's posting to Penguins message board at 2:52am 11/27/08. Today, 6 Pens' vote counts have been going at a torrid pace: about 1500 to 2000 per hour.

Time to back up your posture?

PenguinsExperience.com said...

Using scripts is cheating and wrong and ridiculous no matter what team it supports.

I think it's wrong when Habs fans do it, I think it's wrong when Red Wings fans do it, and I think it's wrong when Penguins fans do it. It's especially ridiculous if the auto-voting gets Whitney or Gonchar into the game. They have no business being there.

As I stated since the beginning, the auto-voting and the NHL's lack of action on it are the problem, not the players who are being voted in. The fact that the voting procedure can still be exploited with auto-voting after all this time is even worse.

Let me say that again, I have nothing against Habs fans and I have nothing against Habs players making the team. Vote legitimately all you want. It's the cheating and the lack of a response from the NHL that are the problem.

The fact that the cheating continues just shows how inept the NHL is at handling this.

And, for the record, yes, I think it's wrong for Pens players to benefit from this just as much as I think it's wrong for Habs players to benefit.

Anonymous said...

Who cares?? It's the freakin all star game. I wish I had nothing better in life to worry about than this. You people are pathetic. Get a freakin life you pieces of garbage.

Anonymous said...

boohoo habs are so awesome and pens are not, someone please join me in crying a river. Not our fault if all Habs fans are dedicated and Pens have maybe 100 dedicated fans. Theres the problem. maybe you guys would have more fans if crosby got traded for someone better like garth murray or chris neil.

Anonymous said...

You people are all homosexual. You should be more worried about the large dick in your ass than the all star game. BooHoo the penguins aren't going to be in it. Let's boycott! Fags!

PenguinsExperience.com said...

Well, it looks like someone opened up the gates to the truly intelligent posters. Thank you for your insight.

Anonymous said...

I cant believe that some naive Habs fans actually think there was no cheating, and others believe that cheating is okay, as long as their precious players get in. OK so its just the all star game, and all your players are going to start, that means that some other deserving player will be left off. Way to go, Montreal.
The NHL should be ashamed of themselves. The whole thing is a joke.Their statement that Montreal fans are showing us how its done was condescending.

Anonymous said...

so theres cheating, big deal. habs are in, pens are out...funny how that works out. go habs go

Anonymous said...

Why don't you guys try bending over and touching your ankles. Get a life. I agree with the other guy that you people are indeed homofaguals. My shit has more of a life than you people.

Anonymous said...

"OK so its just the all star game, and all your players are going to start, that means that some other deserving player will be left off."

That's the underlying point.... Every All-Star game in every sport is becomming the same. Let's vote in guys who don't deserve it because of performance or injury but still get starting spots because of their name alone.... it makes the all star celebration a joke no matter who makes the team. 50% of players voted in decline for one reason or another... some for legit reasons some because they want the 5 days off... I love watching guys from my team get snubbed... let them get healthy rest up and be better when it really matters.... June.

Anonymous said...

50% what are you retarded? try 29%, 6/21 players. and its just an all star game, who cares, we have better fans then the stupid penguins do, who cares...

Anonymous said...

Ahh the arrogant a$$hole Montreal fans come out of the woodworks to claim they have a superior fanbase. Also in; grass green, water wet.

Anonymous said...

The biggest difference is that Malkin and Crosby deserve to be there. The only Habs that deserve it are Markov and Price (NOT as starters).

MattC said...

To all of you hating, Anonymous Montreal Cowards:

We are not complaining that the leaders are Montreal Canadiens, we are complaining that the fan ballot box is easily spoofed/stuffed and that maybe an alternative method of voting should be used.

That being said...I'll watch the game anyway. Ya'll would be stupid not to with all of that talent in one place.

Nicos R said...

I think they should just have the voting for which players make the cut, not what line they are on.

That should be left to the coaches.

Anonymous said...

Green Bay has a huge fanbase too, because what else do they have to root for. I see the same problem in Montreal. That's not a cause for celebration but rather a reality check telling you perhaps you should move to a real city. Meanwhile, almost every city the Pens play in there are almost as many Pens fans as there are for the home team. I'm also fairly sure the Pens are a more popular team than the Canadiens numbers wise, so the self-righteous habs fans that are so full of themselves really have no leg to stand on. I personally like the idea of resetting the votes to 0 and give people 1 week to vote for the right players. I'd guess maybe 2 players from Montreal would make it then, which is about what they deserve.

Anonymous said...

You mean the all star voting is rigged like the draft lottery was in 2005?

Anonymous said...

I vote that you all are fucking gay.

Anonymous said...

If Montreal is so into voting their players, how come Robert Lang only has a few votes? LOL

GO PENS!

CROSBY AND MALKIN ARE THE BEST AND PITTSBURGH IS THE #1 HOCKEY CITY HANDS DOWN.

Canada is so last year. Paleeze!

Anonymous said...

Crosby is moving on up in the standings. The Canadians are mad.

hockey Rules in Pittsburgh!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Crosby is moving your dick up.

Anonymous said...

Since I am a girl I doubt it. Yours must be down as usual.

Canadiens have limp ones I heard.

Anonymous said...

WAH WAH WAH!

Pens Rule. We need to move Malkin over the 2nd class players now!

Anonymous said...

It is cold up there.

Anonymous said...

I see that her vagina is cold.

Anonymous said...

Amazing how a boycott is called for when your players aren't voted for..Yet someone posts the same method to "mass vote" for your team's players and the league ignores it still.

So that said to you still boycott or are you all a bunch of hypocrites?

And Sidney I hate to tell you but YES you will be in that picture AGAIN!

Et le but!

PenguinsExperience.com said...

FYI, I posted an article speaking out against the Penguins JavaScript voting on our Boycott site a few days ago when I wrote:

"A post on the Pittsburgh Penguins Official Message Board makes reference to a Pittsburgh Penguins voting script being used. Through its previous actions the NHL has shown fans that voting by script will not only be tolerated, but they have encouraged it. They have equated "automatically voting via JavaScript" with "devoted fans."

We mentioned last week that this was a dangerous and irresponsible path for the NHL to take, and it has clearly continued down its path of denial and secrecy.

We continue to stand by our intention to boycott the game regardless of who is selected onto the team due to the inaction of the NHL.

This is a nonpartisan boycott. Many people have assumed that we are calling for a boycott simply because members of the Penguins were not leading the balloting. That is simply not true."

Anonymous said...

Check out the article yesterday on http://nhlpens.com regarding the voting scandal....pretty interesting and funny!

Anonymous said...

What a fecking joke. You cry louder on the internet than Cindy Crosby does on the ice. Whaaaaa, the Montreal Canadiens have too many votes, whaaaaa. Meanwhile, Shytsburgh players are leading in votes. I understand Cindy and Eve Malkin leading, but Sergei Gonchar third in points for a defenseman? Ryan Whitney fourth? How about Fleury second in votes for a goalie? Have these guys played at all this season? What a joke! Stop crying spoiled brat.

Anonymous said...

Screw you canadian scum eh? What is this all aboot? The only good thing out of montreal is mario. You canadians can rot. You smell like celine dion's twat.

Confused in Pennsylvania said...

Is this Pens-led Boycott still on? I mean, the whole starting line-up is looking like it will end up being all Pens players including two defensemen that aren't even skating.

Or are all the Pens players supposed to turn down their invitations?

I don't understand how this Pens-led Boycott is supposed to work. Are we upset that the Pens are all getting voted on or something.?

Anonymous said...

Time to update this blog article .... someone?

Either that or take it down I suppose. I mean, we're raking in the votes now, so it kind of looks foolish, don't you think.

Go Pens!!

PenguinsExperience.com said...

AGAIN, this boycott has NOTHING to do with Penguins players not making the team. I never once said that. This boycott is because of the horribly amateur way the NHL has handled the NHL All-Star Game fan balloting.

Check out http://boycott.penguinsexperience.com for more information on the boycott.

Stand by Our Principles said...

Absolutely hilarious. Concise outline of what has happened of late:
http://slapshot.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/12/14/the-morning-skate-cheating-the-all-star-vote/?hp

Turns out it is a Penguins Team VP that has organized all the texting voting for Penguin players that has non-skaters moving to the top of the standings. LOL!!! What a hoot!!

Are we going to boycott the Penguins now? Let's stand by our principles folks, and not merely clam up now.

Anonymous said...

Again, let's see you put your principles at the head of the list, ahead of your team. Your team management has organized the Penguin voting arrangements that are now making a farce out of the game. Please (a) speak to that; and (b) act upon that (spedicifically) -- otherwise you will simply come across as based and (rather) subjective on the matter. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

"It's all about perception."

And people are starting to perceive a rotten egg here.

Anonymous said...

Ah, we don't care about the dumb principles! We're getting all our Pen players on there and that's that. Boycott, shmoycott. I'm just doing what the Pens team told me to do; I got the email from them -- and this is all legit I'm sure they had their lawyers check it all out. If some cheatin' Habs fans don't like it, touch crap. Gonchar is way better than Markov anyway, same goes for Whitney. Go PENS!!

PenguinsExperience.com said...

If you had bothered to read the Boycott website, you would see that we have previously written things like:

"There were initially rumours and evidence that some Canadiens fans were using JavaScript to vote for their players. There are now rumours and evidence that some Penguins fans have been doing the same in regards to Sidney Crosby."

This is a non-biased boycott and it has nothing to do with who is being voted for, but obviously some people are more concerned with insulting specific teams and their fans than actually reading the information posted here.

Anonymous said...

Your opening to your blog on this "unbiased" topic of yours:
_____________

The Montreal Canadiens are running away with the votes for the Eastern Conference All-Star team. At first glance it would appear that the team's dedicated fan base has come out to support their team.

This is not true.
______________

You still haven't addressed the Penguins team executive management "running the ballot show" now. In combination that naturally leads to "Perception of Bias." Ergo, off your pedestal you go!!

PenguinsExperience.com said...

Do you not understand that this post was written WEEKS ago?

When it was written (weeks ago) my opening ("The Montreal Canadiens are running away with the votes for the Eastern Conference All-Star team") was true. I see no problem there.

The more updated information is available on the Boycott subsite which I will update when I feel the need to update it.

This is my last comment in this thread defending my own blog.

Clearly you are also willing to publicly stand by your opinions, which is obviously why you've chosen to post your comments anonymously.

Thank you for reading.

Anonymous said...

Get a life...fuck Canada

Anonymous said...

you guys are hilarious I live in canada but my fav team is the pens has been since I was a kid watching the "frenchman" Lemieux win two stanley cups back to back. The real arugument that you guys should be doing is that Lemieux is better than gretzky, BY FAR! lol. and for the HABS fans ddin't you guys laugh or in my case almost shed a tear when lemieux came back from cancer and scored a goal and 2 assists against T.0. of all teams lol anyway WHy can't we be friends all of us. pz guys montreal vs. pittsburgh in the semi's or conf. finals then we wil do that talking

PenguinsExperience.com said...

I agree.
I live in Canada and I love the Pens as well.
Like I've said before, there is nothing in this post that is anti-Montreal Canadiens. This is a case of the NHL dropping the ball and making the league look ridiculous.
This is not Pittsburgh versus Montreal, regardless of what league press releases would want you to believe.

PenguinsAll-StarExperience.com said...

http://weblogs.amny.com/news/sports/gameface/blog/2008/12/no_games_no_points_no_ice_time.html

No games, no points, no ice time=NHL All-Star

"Penguins of '09 set to challenge the Reds of '57"

LOL!!

PenguinsAll-StarExperience.com

Edit: Correct Profiling of "Edit" said...

EDIT: Many people have asked whether or not the fact that Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are now the leading vote-getters in the Eastern Conference will affect this boycott. It will not.

The boycott has nothing to do with certain players making or not making the team. This boycott was organized in response to the horribly amateur way the NHL has handled the NHL All-Star Game fan balloting since the beginning. The league's handling of the situation has not changed.

Problem is, the league's handling hasn't changed in years. The only thing new this year (prompting the Boycott pledge) was that Penguin players were not leading the ballots (early on).

Perception = 9/10 of the law.

The bias stinks here, to high heaven.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see this acknowledgment, finally, on the Boycott page:

"For the record, however, mass text voting (which is how the Penguins' players moved up the ranks) is not against the rules. It is ridiculous that Gonchar and Whitney benefit however, since they won't be able to play. It also seems kind of petty on behalf of Penguins management."

Good on you.

Anonymous said...

Who cares...it is the all star game. I don't care where you are from...you are all fucking douches

Anonymous said...

PENS IS SHIT!!!
WAIT TILL 27 DECEMBER AND WELL SHOW U WHATS A REAL HOCKEY TEAM U BUNCH OF CHEATERS. HAVE TO CHEAT TO GET YOUR PLAYERS ON TOP. FLEURY IS SHIT AND HE HAS MORE VOTE THAN PRICE? THIS IS ALL BULLSHIT!

Anonymous said...

Shut the eff up you fag habber. Canada sucks and you all know it.

Huh?! Canada sucks? said...

...er....uhmm ....
Crosby, Fleury, other Pens are from Canada. Born and bred. They go home every summer. They play for Team Canada when they whup Team USA.

I guess they suck too, then.

No wonder the whole world (unfortunately) hates America ... it's because Americans like you hate the whole rest of the world.

Anonymous said...

No, I just hate you and your gay country.

Anonymous said...

Canada is all around you. Look at your favourite modern day celebrities, everyday household items and also your favourite past times, Mr. Anonymous at 3:52 pm on Dec. 21.

But, back to the real issue at hand, Penguins fans will become Flyers fans after the team goes back to being horrible like they were for most of this decade. If Crosby looked like Alex Ovechkin, I am willing to bet that the Pens wouldn't have more than half the fans they have now. Girls aren't attracted to ugly men, so most of the Pens fans are a bunch of screaming girls...like Cindy.

Anonymous said...

You people seriously don't think that Carter doesnt deserve to be a starter at this point?
All I am hearing is Crosby/Malkin, where as they are good players, how bout the current goal scoring leader?

Anonymous said...

he can score in my ass yea , all I can see right now is that pens fan aren't crying as much since cindy ''gay ass'' crosby and Malkin ''train wreck face'' are leading the ballot , I might as well start voting for flyers players they deserve it more then a gay ass who makes hockey players look like f'ing whiners.

Anonymous said...

Fuck Canada

Anonymous said...

If Fleury starts over Price, I think I might boycott the game. Just look at their respective performances when they played each other last week.

Anonymous said...

Get a life you cocksuckers

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous dec 23 3:19
All you flyers fans bitch about Syd being a whiner when it's your dear Richards that is though by referees and other players to be the biggest whinner, I mean do you watch your own games? this guy bitches for 60 minutes of the game he can't shut up. Fact is all team captains bitch its part of their jobs to try and influence referees and contest their decisions

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