Tag:Awards Watch
Posted on: May 5, 2011 2:40 pm
Edited on: May 5, 2011 5:22 pm

Perry, Sedin, Stamkos are Lindsay Award finalists

Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks, Daniel Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks and Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning are the finalists for the Ted Lindsay Award, the National Hockey League Players’ Association announced on Thursday. 

The award --- won by Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin the last three seasons --- was formerly known as the Lester B. Pearson Award before the trophy’s name was changed last season to honor Lindsay, a former Detroit Red Wings great. The NHLPA’s version of the MVP is voted on exclusively by players. 

Perry and Sedin are also up for the Hart Trophy, the MVP award the NHL doles out that is voted on by members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association. The winner of the Ted Lindsay Award, like the NHL awards, will be announced on June 22. 

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 29, 2011 1:38 pm
Edited on: April 29, 2011 1:44 pm

Vigneault, Bylsma, Trotz are Jack Adams finalists

Alain Vigneault of the Vancouver Canucks, Dan Bylsma of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Barry Trotz of the Nashville Predators are the finalists for the Jack Adams Award, the NHL announced Friday. The NHL’s coach of the year award will be announced as part of the NHL awards show in June 22. 

This award is chosen by members of the NHL Broadcasters' Association, who submitted their ballots at the conclusion of the regular season. Here is a rundown of the finalists: 

Dan Bylsma, Pittsburgh Penguins: The Pens were all but written off after they lost Sidney Crosby (concussion) and Evgeni Malkin (knee). Bylsma had to deal with 350 man-games lost to injury, not to mention Matt Cooke’s suspensions. Without his Stars, Bylsma went 20-11-4 over the final 35 games to seize home-ice advantage in the first round with the No. 4 seed in the West. 

Barry Trotz, Nashville Predators: Trotz got the Preds to the playoff in six of the past seven seasons, no small feat for a small market club. The salary cap has evened things out, but Nashville still has one of the lowest payrolls in the league. Minus a deep compliment of forwards, Nashville takes a defense-first approach. 

Alain Vigneault, Vancouver Canucks: The Canucks won the Presidents’ Trophy for the first time this season as Vancouver set single-season marks for points, most wins and most road victories. Vancouver scored the most goals of any team this season (262), but also allowed the fewest (185). Vigneault won the award in 2007 and this was his third nomination. 

My pick: It’s hard to overlook the tumult Bylsma dealt with this season. Beyond Crosby and Malkin, Bylsma had to deal with long stretches without Brooks Orpik and Jordan Staal. The Pens, however, never lost focus. He’d get my vote.

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 28, 2011 12:43 pm
Edited on: April 28, 2011 2:47 pm

Hart Trophy: How I voted

 Anaheim Ducks right wing Corey Perry, Vancouver Canucks left wing Daniel Sedin and Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Martin St. Louis are the three finalists for the Hart Memorial Trophy, the league announced on Thursday. The winner of the NHL’s version of the MVP award will be announced on June 2.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted ballots before the start of the playoffs. As a proud member of the organization, my top-3 matched the selections of the overall membership. Here’s how I slotted them:

1. Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks: Perry got my nod by not only how he finished the season, but how he finished many of its games. No player had more goal from the All-Star break on as he amassed 25 goals and 47 points down the stretch. Perry’s 21 third-period goals were the most by a Western Conference player in 17 years and 25 of his goals either tied the game or put the Ducks ahead. For me, it was more than just the fact Perry was the only player in the league this year to compile 50 goals. Many of those goals were crucial to the Ducks making it into the playoffs. 

2. Daniel Sedin, Vancouver Canucks: I voted his brother, Henrik, No. 1 a season ago and it’s not difficult to make the argument for his twin. He finished a league-best 104 points (41 goals and 63 assists) as he aided the Canucks drive for their first Presidents’ Trophy in franchise history. He was also a plus-30, impressive since his 18 goals and 24 assists he had on the power play don’t contribute to that stat. Even though Henrik won the award last year, I certainly didn’t hold that against Daniel. Perry’s surge and overall resume were just a little better. 

3. Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning: Like Perry, St. Louis was a strong finisher. He had a point in each of the Lightning’s nine games as he closed out a 99-point season (31 goals and 68 assists). He had 23 more points than a season ago and was a primary reason the Lightning returned to the playoffs for the first time in four years. It’s also worthy to note that St. Louis played in all 82 games for the fifth consecutive season, making him one of the game’s most reliable forwards again. That’s an important trait for a Hart finalist, in my view at least. 

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 27, 2011 3:46 pm
Edited on: April 27, 2011 3:52 pm

Selke Trophy: How I voted

Pavel Datsyuk of the Detroit Red Wings, Ryan Kesler of the Vancouver Canucks and Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhawks --- all centers --- were announced as the finalists for the Frank Selke Trophy on Wednesday, a trophy that goes to the best defensive forward. The winner will be announced at the NHL awards show on June 22. 

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association vote for the award. As a proud member of the PHWA, here was the top-3 I submitted:

1. Ryan Kesler, Vancouver Canucks: This award, like the Lady Byng, is highly subjective. Still, I felt it was clear that Kesler was the best two-way center in the league this year. He stands in front of shots (Kesler ranked fourth with 80 blocks), back-checks like crazy and doesn’t mind contact. He appeared in all 82 regular season games, averaged 20 minutes, 29 seconds in ice time and was a plus-24. 

2. Manny Malhotra, Vancouver Canucks: Goalie Roberto Luongo and the Canucks benefited greatly by having Malhotra and Kesler in the lineup. Acquired last offseason as a free agent, Malhotra brought his faceoff-circle prowess, leadership and grit to Vancouver. Unfortunately, his season was cut short when he took a shot to the eye on March 16 that required surgery. He faced the competition’s best as much – if not more – than Kesler and still finished plus-9 and was second the league in faceoff percentage (61.7). 

3. Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings: Had injuries not limited him to 56 games this season, it would have been much more difficult for me not to vote him No. 1 again. He’s won the award the previous four seasons. Datsyuk remains a beast in the faceoff circle (54.6% winning percentage) and finished the season plus-11, second-lowest on the Wings. 

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 26, 2011 12:37 pm
Edited on: April 26, 2011 12:58 pm

Emery, Langkow, Laperriere Masterton finalists

Anaheim Ducks goalie Ray Emery, Calgary Flames forward Daymond Langkow and Philadelphia Flyers forward Ian Laperriere were announced Tuesday as the three finalists for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, an award that goes “to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey."

Local chapters of Professional Hockey Writers’ Association make nominations for the Masterton Trophy -- seen by many as the NHL's version of the comeback player of the year award -- and the entire membership votes on the highest three vote getters. The winner will be announced June 22 as part of the NHL awards show. Along with the award, the PHWA also awards a grant annually to the Bill Masterton Scholarship Fund. 

Here’s a rundown of the three finalists: 

Ray Emery, Anaheim Ducks: Emery underwent bone-graft surgery last April to repair a deteriorating ball joint in his right hip. The injury was the result of avascular necrosis, a disease that limits blood flow. After not playing since Feb. 1, 2010, the Ducks signed him Feb. 7 and he finished the season 7-2-0 and posted a 2.28 goals-against average with a .926 save percentage. 

Daymond Langkow, Calgary Flames: Out more than a year after a shot broke a vertebra in his neck, Langkow made it back for this end of the season as the Flames battled for a playoff spot. He played his first game of the season April 1 days after he was cleared to resume practicing. He played in Flames’ final four games, contributing an assist and was a plus-3. 

Ian Laperriere, Philadelphia Flyers: One of the game’s toughest individuals, Laperriere overcame a broken orbital bone and concussion from a blocked shot early in last season’s playoffs and made it back in time for the Flyers’ unexpected run to the Stanley Cup Final. His attempts to return this season were cut short due to concussion-like symptoms, but he still serves as a mentor to younger players and works for the organization.  

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 25, 2011 3:27 pm

Norris Trophy: How I voted

Zdeno Chara of the Boston Bruins, Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings and Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators were announced as the three finalists for the Norris Trophy on Monday, the award that goes to the NHL’s top defenseman. The winner will be announced as part of the NHL’s awards show in June 22.

As a member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association --- those given the honor of selecting this award --- I submitted ballots at the end of the regular season. Here was my top-3: 

1. Zdeno Chara, Boston Bruins: I don’t see a better two-way defenseman in the game right now. He was tops in plus-minus (plus-33) and he had 44 points (14 goals, 30 assists). Chara was also one of  Boston’s top threats on the power play, scoring eight goals. 

2. Lubomir Visnovsky, Anaheim Ducks: As a person who watches a lot of West Coast hockey, I was very impressed with the year Visnovsky put together. He led all defensemen in scoring with 68 points and assists (50). (Toss in the fact he was a plus-18, and he wasn’t too shabby on defense either.) He also put up a lot of these numbers as the Ducks worked their way into a playoff spot late in the season. 

3. Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit Red Wings: The six-time Norris winner  had heck of an offensive year, scoring 62 points (16 goals and 46 assists). He also had to play without his usual defensive partner, Brian Rafalski, who was out injured for stretches. Whether you put much weight on plus-minus or not, the fact he was a minus-2 knocked him down a couple pegs. 

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
Posted on: April 22, 2011 3:02 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2011 3:50 pm

Luongo, Rinne, Thomas finalists for Vezina

Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators,  Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins and Roberto Luongo of the Vancouver Canucks were selected as the three finalists for the Vezina Trophy, the NHL announced Friday. 

The award for the league's top goaltender is selected by the general managers from the 30 clubs and the winner will be announced at NHL awards show on June 22. 

Here are the resumes for each this season:

Roberto Luongo, Vancouver Canucks: He posted a 38-15-7 record to lead the Canucks to their first Presidents' Trophy in team history. His goals-against average (2.11) was the lowest of his 11-seaosn career and was second-best in the NHL this season. The three-time Vezina finalist also had a save percentage of .928, the fourth-best mark this season.   
Pekka Rinne, Nashville Predators: A cog in the Preds sixth playoff appearance over the last seven seasons, Rinne was 33-22-9 this season. His goals-against average (2.12) was the third-lowest in the league this season and he was second in save percentage (.930). Rinne went on amazing run down the stretch, starting 42 of the Preds' final 46 games and allowing two or fewer goals 28 times. 

Tim Thomas, Boston Bruins: After a down 2009-10 and offseason hip surgery, Thomas went 35-11-9. His .938 save percentage was the best since the stat was officially began being tracked 1976-77, edging out Dominik Hasek's (.937) mark from 1998-99 as member of the Buffalo Sabres. He was also tops goals-against average (2.00) and second in shutouts (nine). 

If I had a vote: While Thomas and Luongo both had great seasons, it’s hard to vote against Rinne. (Also, it’s a shame with 11 shutouts that New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist didn’t find his way on here.) The Preds win games via defense and it starts with him. Add in his strong finish, he’d get my nod. 

-- A.J. Perez

Category: NHL
Posted on: April 21, 2011 12:41 pm
Edited on: April 21, 2011 12:53 pm

Lady Byng Trophy: How I voted

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Martin St. Louis, the reigning champ for the NHL’s sportsmanship award, was tapped along Detroit Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom and Dallas Stars left wing Loui Eriksson as finalists for Lady Byng Memorial Trophy, the league announced on Thursday. The winner for the award for gentlemanly conduct will be announced in Las Vegas on June 22. 

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted ballots at the end of the regular season. Here was my top-3:

1. Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit Red Wings: This is the sixth time he’s been a finalist for the Byng, but first time in eight years. I know Lidstrom turned into a bad guy during that stretch. You won’t find him in the penalty box much or barking at the refs incessantly. Nearing his 41st birthday, he remains one of the game’s calming figures. 

2. Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning: Another six-time finalist, St. Louis finished second in scoring this season (99 points) and tied the Lightning's franchise record for assists (68). He also had only 12 minutes of penalties. Under a new system brought in by GM Steve Yzerman and coach Guy Boucher, St. Louis helped lead the Lightning back to the playoffs after a four-year absence. 

3. Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks: The veteran Sharks forward had the fewest penalty minutes (16) since his rookie season. But it’s not about just handling himself between the whistles. Marleau has accepted many different roles -- including moving from center to the wing -- in recent seasons with a high degree of professionalism. 

-- A.J. Perez
Category: NHL
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com