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Tri-City Herald: Best of the West 2013

Feb 17, 2013 - 03:16 PST

By Annie Fowler | Tri-City Herald

No fans, no media, no scouts. The Best of the West voting is done by the insiders — players, management and broadcasters from the 10 clubs in the Western Conference of the Western Hockey League.

Therein lies the appeal, and why this marks the 25th edition of the poll.

The Victoria Times-Colonist in British Columbia founded the survey in 1989. At the request of the Times-Colonist, the Herald took over the poll in 1994 after the Victoria Cougars left Vancouver Island for Prince George.

This year, 52 ballots were returned, one less than last season.

In the early years of the poll, clubs asked individual players to vote on each of the 20 categories. Now, many organizations break into groups of three or four to collaborate on a ballot.