During the 2006–07 NHL season, while playing for the Vancouver Canucks, despite having zero points in 18 games, Fitzpatrick finished third in All-Star Game voting for defensemen in the Western Conference with 550,177 votes, falling 23,000 votes shy of second place Nicklaus Lidstrom winner of 4 Norris Trophies and 3 Stanley Cups.
The idea was to use the new NHL procedure, where people were encouraged to vote as often as they liked, to have an unlikely candidate chosen. Contributors to this goal sent the idea across the Internet in the hopes of having Fitzpatrick voted in as one of the two starting defensemen for the Western Conference. They also created several videos on Youtube as a way to spread news. A website, www.voteforrory.com, was created as well. Rory peaked in balloting at the number 2 position, before eventually being bumped from participation in the game to third place.
The plot was originally conceived as a humorous campaign designed to show the flaws in the NHL voting system. The logic was that if enough people voted for an unlikely player to start the game, the league would change its system. After some time, the plan metamorphosed for many into a more symbolic gesture.
For his part, Fitzpatrick — who never actively supported the campaign beyond donning a T-shirt at the request of photographers — stated that he had gotten a kick out of the movement and acknowledged the hard work that his supporters had put into it. Fitzpatrick's teammates were also supportive, with several voicing their intention to vote, and wearing customized "Vote for Rory" T-shirts at a team practice.
The final voting results on January 13, 2007 saw Rory finish in third place behind Scott Niedermayer and Nicklaus Lidstrom, meaning he did not start in the All-Star game. Slate found the final results suspicious due to unlikely numerical coincidences in the final week of voting, and believed that the NHL altered the vote counts.
Thursday, 04.01.2007 Vancouver Canucks website
At 6'2 210 pounds, Rory Fitzpatrick doesn't have a hard time
standing out but until only very recently has he made news of an all-star
The "Vote-For-Rory" campaign has definitely given Rory the attention deserving of an all-star. With all this new attention, fans just can't get enough so he took some time to answer your questions.
How do you feel about the all-star voting? (Charis Cerrer, Duncan; Amina Ayub; Kevin Dhami)
I think it's good to see the fans are so passionate about the game. As far as I'm concerned, it's not so much about me but more about the game and their desire to have something changed and get a different player into the all-star game, I just happen to be chosen for it.
How did you get started in hockey? (Mitch)
My dad was a coach and my older player, I was just at the rink all the time with his team. It was just kind of natural that I would play with my dad being a coach and my brother playing also.
Who was your favourite player growing up? (Adam Houle)
My favourite player was Ray Bourque. I was a Boston Bruins fan, he was defence and I was defence. He obviously one of the best defenseman ever played so it wasn't a hard player to choose.
Do you have any pre-game rituals? (Sam, Taylor)
No not really. I just eat pretty much the same meal, I eat mainly pasta and chicken and get a nap in and that's about it.
How do you maintain a good balance between your career and your family? (Faith Lariviere, Port Alberni)
Pretty much when I'm at the rink it's hockey and when I'm at home, it's all family. I don't take the game home with me. When I'm home, I try to spend as much time with them and do things that normal families do and just get in as much time as possible when I'm home. When you're home you spend time with them and not off doing things with other people. I think that most of the time that I'm home, I spend with my family so there's not a lot of time to go out and golf or anything like that. I'm usually fishing and spending time with my family instead of doing things that some of the other guys may do.
What was the best part of being part of the playoff run with Buffalo last year? (Jay Bridges)
I think the fan support was incredible there in Buffalo and it was a that was electric for a couple of months. Just being able to go that far and being the close to the Stanley Cup was a great experience.
What is your favourite city to visit? (Natalie W., Vancouver)
Probably New York City. There's endless things to do and great places to eat. I think it's just a free trip to New York City, which is great and there's just plenty of stuff to do. There's too many places to list but they have great steak places to go.
Who is your roommate on the road? (Patrick, Delta; Kayla)
Right now it's Marc Chouinard. He's a TV expert and I don't get to watch too much TV with the family so he fills me in on everything that's going on in the celebrity realm of things. Marc is extremely neat, he's almost pretty much too neat. I'm a messy guy so we balance off that way.
What would people be surprised to know about you? (Jamie, Vancouver)
Oh man, I don't know. I've had a hole in one. I'm a bad golfer but I got a hole in one.
What advice would you give to girls trying to make it in hockey? (Madog Chow)
I think it's a great time to be a girl in hockey, I think there's a lot more opportunity for girls. I know at the US college level there's tons of opportunity for girls to advance in hockey so I think that just because you're a girl doesn't mean there's no where to go. There's plenty of opportunity out there for girls and it seems that the popularity is increasing and with that there will be more opportunities so just work hard and have fun with it. With all the new opportunities just enjoy playing.