We're back to the NHL Awards, they take place at 7pm EST tonight and it should be a great show. I decided I would write a blog writing who I thought should be taking home hardware this year. I skipped the GM of the year award, King Clancy, because I don't care about them.
Ted Lindsay Award (Most outstanding player voted by players)
The nominees this year are Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars, Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens. This hurts me to say and I hope nobody ever quotes me on this, but I think that Carey Price should take this one home tonight. He was the sole reason that the Canadiens had any success this year and he was their backbone. As soon as Price started struggling in the playoffs, so did the Canadiens. Alex Ovechkin is a good option as well but I absolutely hate how he plays zero defense, he glides back on the back check which always kills me.
Selke Trophy (Forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game)
The nominees are Patrice Bergeron of the Boston Bruins, Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhwaks and Anze Kopitar of the Los Angeles Kings. I'm pretty sure everyone knows my pick here and if you don't you're an idiot. I'm going with Bergeron all day every day. The guy is just an absolute stud in the defensive zone. He's constantly batting and not afraid to muck it up in the corners. I think you have no option but to respect that out of a star player. Bergeron will do absolutely anything to help his team win and that usually means battling in the d-zone. Toews and Kopitar are both obviously incredible in their defensive zone as well so I can't knock them if they win.
Norris Trophy (Top defenseman)
The nominees this year are Drew Doughty of the Los Angeles Kings, Erik Karlsson of the Ottawa Senators and P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens. Let me start this by saying I hate Subban so he's already out of my runnings, cya bud. That's how things are run around here. So it's down to Doughty and Karlsson, both absolute studs. I'm going with Doughty because he's an insane two-way defenseman. He put up 46 points (7G, 39A) which is awesome for a defenseman, while doing that he also played a great defensive game and averaged 29min per game, that's a minute less than half the game which is absurd. To be consistent while playing that many minutes isn't an easy thing to do.
Jack Adams Award (Top head coach)
The nominees for this are Bob Hartley of the Calgary Flames, Peter Laviolette of the Nashville Predators, and Alain Vigneault. I won't say much about this cause I don't think anyone reaaaaally cares who wins the Jack Adams. My pick is Hartley. No one really expected the Flames to do great this year, which they did. Hartley was pushing the right buttons, in April when the games were "life or death" the Flames out-played the Kings to make it into the playoffs for the first time since 2009. The Flames also had a 20pt increase since last season which is the highest in the Western Conference and 3rd highest in the NHL.
Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy (Goal scoring leader)
This one isn't too exciting either since Ovechkin always wins. That dirty Russian put up 53 ginos this year which I will give to him, is damn impressive. Good for you bud.
Mark Messier Leadership Award
The nominees are Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks, Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhwaks, and Andrew Ladd of the Winnipeg Jets. This is pretty obvious to me, Jonathan Toews. Dude just lead the Hawks to their 3rd Stanley Cup in 5 years. I know that they don't count the post season in this, but I do so whatever. I'm pretty sure Toews just pisses leadership. Guy is a leader on and off the ice. Getzlaf certainly could make a case for himself but I'm going with Toews.
Art Ross Trophy (Scoring champion)
This is awarded to the player that leads the league in points at the end of the regular season. Jamie Benn won. Whatever I hate you.
Calder Trophy (Top rookie)
The nominees are Johnny Gaudreau of the Calgary Flames, Aaron Ekblad of the Florida Panthers, and Mark Stone. I'm not going to beat around the bush, i'll come right out and say it, if Johnny Hockey doesn't win this trophy then I quit watching the NHL. Kid was an absolute menace this season registering 64pts (24G, 40A) in 80 games. Boom done, he's godda win. I'll give it to Ekblad though he was an a solid blue liner at the ripe age of 19.
Vezina Trophy (Top goaltender)
The nominees are Devan Dubnyk of the Minnesota Wild, Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens, and Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators. To me it comes down to Price and Rinne, both of whom are incredible tendys. I'm going to have to go with Price though. He was a brick wall all season and I think you have to honor that.
William M. Jennings Trophy (Goaltender who plays at least 25 games for the club allowing the fewest goals)
The winners this season were Carey Price of the Canadiens and Corey Crawford of the Chicago Blackhawks. Good work, fellas.
Lady Byng Trophy (Player best combing sportsmanship and ability)
The nominees are Pavel Datsyuk of the Detroit Red Wings, Jiri Hudler of the Calgary Flames, and Anze Kopitar of the Los Angeles Kings. My choice is Kopitar. While he's a stud in the defensive zone, he always knows how to put up numbers. He recorded 64 points in 79 games while only getting 10 penalty minutes all season. For a guy that plays so much in the defensive zone, that's pretty impressive.
Masterson Trophy (Perseverance and dedication to hockey)
The nominees are Andrew Hammond of the Ottawa Senators, Kris Letang of the Pittsburgh Penguins, and Devan Dubnyk of the Minnesota Wild. My pick is Andrew Hammond. He was absolutely lights out for the Sens. Hammond is an undrafted 27yr old who went on a 20-1-2 run in his 23 starts, that's damn impressive. Hammond also matched a record of allowing two or less goals in his first twelve starts.
Hart Trophy (Most valuable player to his team)
The nominees are John Tavares of the New York Islanders, Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals, and Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens. My pick is JT. He was incredible this season and deserves it 100% in my book. Ovechkin doesn't deserve it in my book, if you're going to be the best player in the league I think you need to play a lick of defense and not just glide in the neutral zone. While Carey Price could make a fight for himself, I don't think he was good enough to be the best player in general in the whole league. Tavares was solid all around so he's my pick.