Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The 2006 NHL awards

I'm only handing out the six biggies.


The Selke Trophy
Rod Brind'Amour
Carolina Hurricanes


Runner-ups: Samuel Pahlsson, Brian Rolston.


Hulking 'Canes captain had a huge season on all fronts, but was especially dominating in the faceoff circle, where he took 44 per cent of Carolina's draws and was third in the NHL with a 59.2% win percentage.


The Jack Adams Trophy
Peter Laviolette
Carolina Hurricanes

Runner-ups: Mike Babcock, Lindy Ruff.


There are 10 fantastic coaches in the NHL, but Laviolette did more with less than any other bench boss this season, guiding a team many predicted out of the playoffs to the top of the Eastern Conference.


The Norris Trophy
Nicklas Lidstrom
Detroit Red Wings

Runner-ups: Scott Niedermayer, Zdeno Chara.

Lidstrom notched nine more points than the next best defenceman on the best team in the league, bouncing back from a rare off year in 2003-04. Barring an upset by Niedermayer, this will be Lidstrom's fourth Norris Trophy in the past five seasons.


The Calder Trophy
Alex Ovechkin
Washington Capitals

Runner-ups: Sidney Crosby, Dion Phaneuf.


Ovechkin's phenomenal season was made all the more amazing due to his complete lack of a supporting cast. Early on, Ovechkin began seeing opposing team's best defense pairings on every shift, yet he continued to produce unbelievable numbers.


The Vezina Trophy
Miikka Kiprusoff
Calgary Flames

Runner-ups: Tomas Vokoun, Martin Brodeur.


Another easy one, as Kiprusoff proved handily that his 2003-04 breakout season wasn't a fluke. The Flames netminder led NHL goaltenders in wins, goals-against average, shutouts and minutes played.


The Hart Trophy
Joe Thornton
San Jose Sharks

Runner-ups: Jaromir Jagr, Miikka Kiprusoff.


I made my case for Thornton a few days ago, and since then, he's zipped past Jagr for the league scoring lead. It's definitely going to be a close vote, but the momentum among the press definitely seems to be towards Thornton as the season winds down. As Eric Duhatschek said on Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday, voters put a lot of stock in how players finish the season, and no one's been as good as Thornton down the stretch.

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4 Comments:

At 10:29 AM, April 18, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has a Hart trophy winner ever been traded mid-season before?

 
At 11:19 AM, April 18, 2006, Anonymous Earl Sleek said...

Sammy Pahlsson is a fantastic defensive forward. Kudos for recognizing Anaheim's second-best secret.

Andy McDonald, for whatever reason, is still #1.

 
At 6:20 PM, June 21, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Laviolette did more with less than any other bench boss this season, guiding a team many predicted out of the playoffs to the top of the Eastern Conference."

I have to disagree. Lindy Ruff did MORE with WAY less than any other coach this season. Plus the Hurricanes were NOT the top of the East at the end of the reg season, when voting took place. You wrote this article in April, and the Canes were still fighting for their lives in the playoffs. They barely won the Cup this year.

 
At 10:28 PM, June 22, 2006, Blogger James Mirtle said...

You wrote this article in April, and the Canes were still fighting for their lives in the playoffs. They barely won the Cup this year.

I wrote the 'article' at the end of the regular season and before the playoffs, when voting took place. Carolina finished second in the Eastern Conference, one point behind first-place Ottawa, and besides, there's no such thing as barely winning the Cup.

Laviolette certainly got all there was to get out of the Hurricanes cast.

 

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