Ladies and gentlemen of Broad Street Hockey, our moment has arrived.
Today is the first day of voting for the 2011 NHL All-Star Game, a showcase of hockey's brightest stars set to be held in the sport's spiritual home of Raleigh, North Carolina.
But with great excitement comes great responsibility. A recent unscientific poll showed that as the league currently sits, treasured Philadelphia Flyer and Latvian Wolf Oskars Bartulis would not be chosen for the All-Star Game.
This injustice must be rectified. We here at Broad Street Hockey are committed to securing Oskars' place in the lineup of the All-Star Game, which this year means that #3 must finish in the top two of NHL defensemen in this vote. It won't be easy, but it can be done.
Detailed instructions on how to vote, as well as answers to frequently answered questions after the jump:
How to Vote for Oskars Bartulis:
- Go to the NHL All-Star Fan Ballot site, http://vote.nhl.com/ .
- This is America, where you have to register to vote. If you don't already have an NHL.com account, make one.
- Vote for three forwards. There are three Flyer forwards (Mike Richards, Jeff Carter, Danny Briere) on the ballot, so it should be a pretty easy task. But you can definitely throw in a write-in vote for darkhorse Claude Giroux if the spirit moves you to do so. If you want to show loyalty and a facade of impartiality, maybe consider throwing some love R.J. Umberger's way.
- Scroll down to the second section, the one for defensemen. All-Star Games are traditionally defensive showcases, so the stakes for these two votes are much higher. The tough thing about this ballot is that it already has two Flyer defensemen (Kimmo Timonen and Chris Pronger), so you're going to have to choose which one of them will be joining Oskars on your ballot.
- Once you figure out which of them it's gonna be, time for the important part. On the bottom of the defensemen section, there is a write-in option.
Write in "Oskars Bartulis,"
or, alternately, "Bartulis, Oskars".
- Click "ADD." Oskars' face will pop onto your ballot,
along with a white button to the right of his face that says "VOTE."
Click this "VOTE" button immediately.
- If you wish, click Oskars' "PLAYER DETAILS" button to see actual video footage of his most recent goal, as well as to marvel at his positive plus/minus rating.
- Vote for a goalie. This vote should undoubtedly go to Sergei Bobrovsky, since he knows Oskars Bartulis. He's not on the ballot, either, so just type in "Bob." Kenneth the Page's face will then pop up, and click the "VOTE" button next to it. So easy. You're getting good at this.
- With your team now set, scroll back to the top of the page. You should see the faces of Oskars Bartulis and the five other men you have deemed worthy of your vote.
- Type in the mystery characters and press "SUBMIT YOUR BALLOT."
(Note: Every time I've voted so far, the name and face of the forward I chose first has shown up in place of my goalie. Presumably this will be fixed. I wouldn't worry about it too much--what matters here is Oskars.)
- Congratulations, you have now voted for Oskars Bartulis. But your work is not done.
Click "VOTE AGAIN" and do just that--vote again. You can and should vote at least thirty times each day, every day, from now until January 3rd.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q. How many times should I vote?
A. 1,500 times. It seems as though voting is limited to thirty times per day, though I would definitely like to see you test that rule. Voting is open for 50 days, until January 3rd. (30 votes per day) x (50 days) = 1,500 votes.
Q. How can I tell if Oskars' is winning the election?
A. Vote totals will be released for the first time a week from today. We'll keep you posted on his (and all Flyers') progress.
Q. What should I wear when I'm voting?
A. What a good question! Luckily for you, we have not one but two Oskars Bartulis' shorts available for immediate purchase in the BSH Store. Like the "VOTE WOLF" logo our designer-to-the-stars Shaun Kreider whipped up for this campaign? Let us know in the comments, and we'll make it available as a shirt, or a bumper sticker, or something.
Q. Who else should I tell to vote for Oskars Bartulis?
A. Every single person you know. Seriously, don't shut up about it. Blab away on your computer via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and wherever else you think possible. Talk people up at work, at school, at the bus stop, in various waiting rooms, at the DMV--anywhere people have ears.
Q. What else can I do to help?
A. We know that like for any successful campaign, getting out and meeting the people is key. We are hoping to be able to some grassroots-type leafleting outside the WFC (and possibly opponents arenas) before and after Flyers games. If you're up for being part of our ground game, give a shout in the comments and we'll it going.
Q. OK, so I'll vote for Oskars Bartulis 1,500 times, and I'll force everyone I know to do the same. Besides from the overwhelming new-found senses of purpose and achievement in my life, what's in it for me?
A. A hug from Oskars!
(Note: delivery of hug left to Oskars Bartulis' discretion, as of now).
So there you have it. We've sounded the call to action, but only you can make this dream a reality.
Vote early, vote often. Vote Wolf.