Maple Leafs players put pressure to put Morgan Rielly in the game of stars


NEWARK, N.J. – The Toronto Maple Leafs are making a list effort to raise support for Morgan Rielly before the ballot box closes for the NHL all-star game vote.

While the team took their time off before visiting the New Jersey Devils on Thursday, their Twitter account collapsed pumping home videos with Leafs' players backing Rielly's bid.

"Defender of Elite, it should be in the game of the stars, take the defender in goals, above the average of the team-mate, do what you have to do," said Nazem Kadri.

Rielly is voting for NHL's new "Last Men In" feature, which allows fans to vote on the last player added to each division's star team. He faces Patrice Bergeron (Boston), Jeff Skinner (Buffalo), Dylan Larkin (Detroit), Aleksander Barkov (Florida), Shea Weber (Montreal), Mark Stone (Ottawa) and Brayden Point (Tampa) in the Atlantic Division.

Rielly is in the middle of a career season – already with 13 goals and 45 points, the second highest total among NHL defenders behind Brent Burns (49) – but did not seem too bothered when he was deferred to the all- star team last week.

However, with the vote due to the close of Thursday night, Jake Gardiner, his long-time partner and campaign manager, channeled Steven Spielberg and created short videos of Rielly from funny to induce crue.

(It's fair to say that an acting career is not in the future of Patrick Marleau when he eventually decides to hang the skates.)

The Arkells and Mayor of Toronto John Tory were among the others to take to social media in support of Rielly.

The Leafs currently have two representatives. Auston Matthews was elected to command the Atlantic Division team by fans before John Tavares was chosen by the NHL's hockey operations department. There was no room for Rielly or Mitch Marner, with 31 teams needing a player named.

"In my opinion, having lost the time I did [with a shoulder injury]seeing these three guys, the way they played – Johnny, Mitch and Mo – I think I'd give them my place on any day of the week because they had unbelievable seasons, "Matthews said when the lists were announced.

Recently, Rielly told reporters that as much as he liked being in San Jose for the weekend of January 24 to 26, he did not mind the idea of ​​getting some rest before the trip.

Your teammates, it seems, have other ideas.


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