NHL awards cheat sheet (so you can avoid Nickelback)

Here’s a look at the contenders for some of the league’s most prestigious awards.

Pekka Rinne has single-handedly proven the importance of an elite goaltender by spending the first two games of the Predators’ second round series against Phoenix not being one.

 

Norris Trophy (best defenceman) Erik Karlsson: Many voters have already acknowledged casting their ballots for the Senators’ talented young blueliner, citing his high point totals, his dynamic offensive game, and the presence of Matt Carkner cracking his knuckles while grunting, “You make little Erik sad, big Matt make you sad.” Zdeno Chara: The Bruins’ undisputed franchise player should be absolutely unstoppable in the voting, unless the ballots end up being counted by some unheralded rookie goalie. Shea Weber: They say that a defenceman has had a great game when you don’t even notice anything he did, so we can assume that Weber has Brendan Shanahan’s vote.

Vezina Trophy (best goaltender) Henrik Lundqvist: Stopped 1,630 shots directed at the New York net this season, which was so impressive it almost ranked him in the top 10 among Ranger players. Jonathan Quick: Has already set several important Los Angeles Kings franchise goaltending records, such as “most games played without wearing a ridiculous blue bandana under his mask.” Pekka Rinne: Has single-handedly proven the importance of an elite goaltender by spending the first two games of the Predators’ second round series against Phoenix not being one.

Calder Trophy (best rookie) Ryan Nugent-Hopkins: He would be the first Edmonton Oilers player to win a major individual award in his lifetime, he says, before trailing off and asking why all the old people are suddenly staring at calendars and crying. Gabriel Landeskog: While some fans are no doubt sick of hearing about his maturity, observers can’t help but remark on how incredibly poised he is, and how he often seems like a man playing among boys, and how he’s already won the Calder Trophy six times since 1998. Adam Henrique: He is the first Devils player to be nominated for the Calder since Scott Gomez in 2000, which isn’t really important except that a lot of Canadiens fans read this and it’s fun to ruin their entire day by randomly working in a Scott Gomez reference.

Jack Adams Award (best coach) Ken Hitchcock: In keeping with the Blues’ season, the league will let Davis Payne ramble through the first few seconds of the acceptance speech before Hitchcock shows up and does a way better job. Paul MacLean: The notoriously unflappable MacLean should manage to keep his composure during the ceremony despite the awkward realization that every one of ushers in the theatre have served as head coach the Senators within the last few years. John Tortorella: Everyone is hoping he will win since it would be fun to see an acceptance speech that consisted entirely of tersely muttering “no update” three times before asking “Are we done?” and storming off.

Hart Trophy (most valuable player) Henrik Lundqvist: A win would make him the first goaltender to win the Hart Trophy since José Theodore in 2002, and the first goalie to deserve the Hart Trophy since Dominik Hasek in 1998. Steven Stamkos: Is working hard to establish the NHL product in a non-traditional market that often receives so little mainstream attention that you can just credit pretty much every goal your team scores all year to the same player and nobody will notice. Evgeni Malkin: Experts expect him to win easily and are looking forward to seeing him accept the trophy at the awards ceremony, since it will be the first time anyone has seen him since the end of the regular season.

The hardware will be handed out on June 20 in Las Vegas during a televised ceremony that you were planning to watch right up until you found out Nickelback was playing. So instead, let’s just run through the nominees in the major categories now and be done with it.

Here’s a look at the contenders for some of the league’s most prestigious awards.

Norris Trophy (best defenceman) Erik Karlsson: Many voters have already acknowledged casting their ballots for the Senators’ talented young blueliner, citing his high point totals, his dynamic offensive game, and the presence of Matt Carkner cracking his knuckles while grunting, “You make little Erik sad, big Matt make you sad.” Zdeno Chara: The Bruins’ undisputed franchise player should be absolutely unstoppable in the voting, unless the ballots end up being counted by some unheralded rookie goalie. Shea Weber: They say that a defenceman has had a great game when you don’t even notice anything he did, so we can assume that Weber has Brendan Shanahan’s vote.

Vezina Trophy (best goaltender) Henrik Lundqvist: Stopped 1,630 shots directed at the New York net this season, which was so impressive it almost ranked him in the top 10 among Ranger players. Jonathan Quick: Has already set several important Los Angeles Kings franchise goaltending records, such as “most games played without wearing a ridiculous blue bandana under his mask.” Pekka Rinne: Has single-handedly proven the importance of an elite goaltender by spending the first two games of the Predators’ second round series against Phoenix not being one.

Calder Trophy (best rookie) Ryan Nugent-Hopkins: He would be the first Edmonton Oilers player to win a major individual award in his lifetime, he says, before trailing off and asking why all the old people are suddenly staring at calendars and crying. Gabriel Landeskog: While some fans are no doubt sick of hearing about his maturity, observers can’t help but remark on how incredibly poised he is, and how he often seems like a man playing among boys, and how he’s already won the Calder Trophy six times since 1998. Adam Henrique: He is the first Devils player to be nominated for the Calder since Scott Gomez in 2000, which isn’t really important except that a lot of Canadiens fans read this and it’s fun to ruin their entire day by randomly working in a Scott Gomez reference.

Jack Adams Award (best coach) Ken Hitchcock: In keeping with the Blues’ season, the league will let Davis Payne ramble through the first few seconds of the acceptance speech before Hitchcock shows up and does a way better job. Paul MacLean: The notoriously unflappable MacLean should manage to keep his composure during the ceremony despite the awkward realization that every one of ushers in the theatre have served as head coach the Senators within the last few years. John Tortorella: Everyone is hoping he will win since it would be fun to see an acceptance speech that consisted entirely of tersely muttering “no update” three times before asking “Are we done?” and storming off.

Hart Trophy (most valuable player) Henrik Lundqvist: A win would make him the first goaltender to win the Hart Trophy since José Theodore in 2002, and the first goalie to deserve the Hart Trophy since Dominik Hasek in 1998. Steven Stamkos: Is working hard to establish the NHL product in a non-traditional market that often receives so little mainstream attention that you can just credit pretty much every goal your team scores all year to the same player and nobody will notice. Evgeni Malkin: Experts expect him to win easily and are looking forward to seeing him accept the trophy at the awards ceremony, since it will be the first time anyone has seen him since the end of the regular season.

Down Goes Brown (National Post)

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Posted on May 1, 2012, in players and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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