'NHL 14' cover vote gets underway

EA Sports and NHL.com are teaming up for the second straight year to give fans the opportunity to vote for the “NHL 14” cover athlete.

The first round begins today, pitting teammate versus teammate in hopes of advancing to the 32-player leaderboard. From there, the top vote-getters will advance to a Sweet 16 bracket, facing off in head-to-head battles until the final winner is announced in June.

Candidates include everyone from Zdeno Chara and Evgeni Malkin to Joe Thornton and Dustin Brown, and according to “NHL 14” general manager, Dean Richards, the winner has nothing to fear, as the cover curse only seems to take down “Madden” athletes.

Said Richards: “Players who have graced the EA Sports ‘NHL’ cover in the past have historically had banner years in the season that followed. Patrick Kane scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal in 2010, Steven Stamkos notched a league-leading 60 goals in 2012 and Claude Giroux became the captain of the Philadelphia Flyers this season.”

So what are you waiting for? Vote today and help your favorite player become the face of hockey video games.