On the same day the NHL announced it is expanding to Las Vegas, the best players in the league were in town for the annual awards ceremony to honor the best performances of the 2015-16 season.
The big winners on the night were members of the Chicago Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings and Washington Capitals.
Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane took home the MVP and Ted Lindsay Award, while his teammate and linemate, Artemi Panarin, took home the Rookie of the Year award (Calder). Meanwhile, Kings teammates Anze Kopitar (Selke Trophy, Lady Byng) and Drew Doughty (Norris Trophy) also were big winners.
Capitals goalie Braden Holtby became the third different Capitals goalie to win the Vezina Trophy, while Barry Trotz took home the coach of the year.
Here are all of the night's awards winners, as well as reactions and analysis from CBS hockey writers Adam Gretz and Chris Peters for each one.
Most Valuable Player
Reactions: On a night where he also collected the Art Ross Trophy (scoring champion) and Ted Lindsay award (most outstanding player as voted by the players) Kane won also won his first MVP award, becoming the first American-born player to do so since Billy Burch (born in Yonkers, New York) all the way back in 1925 as a member of the Hamilton Tigers. He is the first Chicago Blackhawks player since Stan Mikita to win it.
Not only did Kane win it, he won in a landslide, collecting more than 120 out of the 150 first-place votes.
The runner-up for the award, Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby, had only 11. Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn finished in third in the voting with eight first-place votes.
Kane finished the regular season with 106 points (46 goals and 60 assists), finishing 17 points ahead of Benn. It is only the second time in NHL history a player recorded at least 100 points in a season where no other player in the league recorded at least 90 points (Sidney Crosby also did it during the 2013-14 season for the Pittsburgh Penguins).
Here are the complete voting results for the MVP award. -- Adam Gretz
Reactions: With the GMs voting for this award, Holtby's record-setting season was surely going to take the top prize.
Braden Holtby was a rock in net for the Washington Capitals as they won the Presidents' Trophy, racking up 48 wins to tie Martin Brodeur's single-season record for victories by a goaltender. Holtby is the third Caps netminder to take home the award, joining Jim Carey and Olaf Kolzig as Vezina winners.
Beating out Ben Bishop and Jonathan Quick, Holtby earned 26 of 30 first-place votes.
On top of his impressive wins total, Holtby was in the top 10 in each of the key goaltending categories. He was fifth in goals-against average (2.20) and eighth in save percentage (.922) while appearing in 66 games during the season.
In addition to earning the Vezina, Holtby was also a finalist for the Lindsay Award as MVP as voted on by the players.
The 26-year-old netminder still probably has his best years ahead of him. -- Chris Peters
Reactions: There seemed to be a season-long push for Drew Doughty to win his first Norris Trophy, and now he has it.
The "it's his time to win it" narrative is a bit bizarre when you consider the fact Doughty is only 26 years old and even better players than him had to wait even longer to win their first (like, say, Nicklas Lidstrom for example).
This isn't meant to take anything away from Doughty. He is an outstanding player and is clearly on the short list of best defensemen in the league. But is he a better, more impactful player than somebody like Erik Karlsson, who not only put up one of the best offensive seasons of any defenseman in recent memory, but is also perhaps the most game-changing player the league has seen at the position in decades?
In the eyes of the voters this season ... yes.
Here are the complete voting results. -- Adam Gretz
Best defensive forward
Reactions: It was going to be Kopitar or Bergeron. In a race this close, perhaps the Kings reaching the postseason was the deciding factor. Bergeron was his typically dominant self, but Kopitar was certainly right up there.
Kopitar has been a finalist for the Selke Trophy in each of the past two seasons, but the Los Angeles Kings forward finally won it this time. A dominant force at both ends of the ice, Kopitar nearly topped his career high in points this season, while going head-to-head with the opposition's top lines.
He is the first Kings player in the franchise's nearly 50-year history to win the Selke. No forward played more minutes this season than Kopitar's 1,690:12, an average of nearly 21 minutes a game. The Kings were one of the stingiest teams in the NHL, thanks in large part to Kopitar, Norris Trophy winning defenseman Drew Doughty and Vezina Trophy finalist Jonathan Quick.
The newly minted captain of the Kings ranked seventh in the NHL with 950 faceoff wins, was second in the league with a plus-34 rating, while the Kings controlled even-strength shot attempts at a 56.6 percent clip with Kopitar on the ice.
While Bergeron had a good case for another Selke, Kopitar is still quite deserving. Ryan Kesler was also a finalist, but finished a distant third. -- Chris Peters
Awarded to the rookie of the year
Reaction: There really isn't much of a surprise here.
Panarin seemed to be the runaway favorite for most of the season for putting up absolutely ridiculous numbers, finishing the regular season not only as the leading rookie scorer, but also as the 10th leading scorer in the league among all players with 77 points (30 goals and 47 assists).
He is the first Chicago Blackhawks player to win the rookie of the year award since Patrick Kane in 2007.
The biggest criticism of Panarin as the rookie of the year is the fact he is 24 years old and had previously played several years of professional hockey in Russia. But in the eyes of the league, he is a rookie, and was an impact player from the moment he arrived. The other factor is that Connor McDavid, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 draft, missed half of the season. Even though McDavid was a more productive player on a per-game basis and seemed to be the most dynamic rookie in the league (and one of the most dynamic players in the league), the missed time and inferior raw numbers to Panarin were just too much to overcome in this one.
In fact, it not only prevented him from winning the award, it resulted in him finishing third behind Panarin and Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. -- Adam Gretz
Ted Lindsay Award
Most outstanding player as voted by the players
Reaction: The league's top scorer seemed like the obvious choice here.
Patrick Kane earned this award as the players' choice for most valuable player. He beat out Jamie Benn and Braden Holtby.
Kane had a career season for the Blackhawks. He led the NHL with 106 points, 17 ahead of the next closest player. Kane also notched 46 goals, surpassing his previous career best by 16. He is also the first American-born player in NHL history to win the Art Ross Trophy as the league's top scorer.
The Blackhawks star was in on 40 percent of the goals his team scored this season as they finished third in the Central Division.
While Benn and Holtby both had fantastic seasons, Kane's historic campaign was not going to be topped. -- Chris Peters
Jack Adams Award
Coach of the year
Barry Trotz, Washingon Capitals
Reactions: Trotz helped lead the Capitals to one of their best regular-season performances ever and the second Presidents' Trophy (best record in the league) in franchise history.
Usually known for being a defensive-minded coach, Trotz's Capitals dominated at both ends of the ice, finishing second in the league in goals scored, goals against, and in the top five in both the power play and penalty kill. Because of the NHL's divisional playoff format, they had to meet the hottest team in the NHL -- the Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins -- in the second round of the playoffs. Trotz ended up winning the coach of the year by a pretty significant margin. -- Adam Gretz
General manager of the year
Jim Rutherford, Pittsburgh Penguins
Reactions: One year ago -- and probably even six months ago -- this would have seemed like a crazy thing to suggest, but Rutherford pushed all of the right buttons for the Pittsburgh Penguins this season to help the team erase a slow start to win the Stanley Cup. He is only the second general manager in the modern era to win the Stanley Cup with two different teams, having also won it with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2005-06 (both times with a rookie goalie -- Cam Ward in 2006 with the Hurricanes and Matt Murray in 2016 with the Penguins).
Among the major moves Rutherford made during the past year were acquiring the HBK line of Phil Kessel, Nick Bonino and Carl Hagelin in separate trades, acquiring defenseman Justin Schultz at the deadline, signing Eric Fehr in free agency, and bringing up a group of rookies in Murray, Bryan Rust, Tom Kuhnhackl and Conor Sheary that helped give the Penguins one of the deepest lineups in the NHL. -- Adam Gretz
Bill Masterton Trophy
Awarded for Perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.
Reactions: This was a really tough year to pick with three truly deserving candidates, but Jagr's longevity and historic season made him a particularly good choice.
Jaromir Jagr's 2015-16 campaign was one that should be remembered for a long time. The future Hall of Famer, who turned 44 in the second half of the season, was the top scorer for the Florida Panthers and helped propel them to the Atlantic Division title. No one older than 43 had ever topped 50 points in a season. Jagr hit 66, including 27 goals.
Playing alongside linemates who would not be as old as Jagr if you combined their ages, No. 68 showed that he has still got a lot left in the tank. Not only that, but some nights during the season, Jagr could be found working out until the wee hours of the morning -- even if he played in the hours before that.
The Masterton can be a tough award to hand out since the ideals behind it -- perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey -- can be broadly defined. However, with Jagr, it's easy to say he has all of those qualities tied into his game.
Pascal Dupuis, who remained with the Penguins as an advisor after blood clots cost him the rest of the 2015-16 season, and New York Rangers forward Mats Zuccarello, who made an incredible recovery from a head injury sustained in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, were also up for the award. -- Chris Peters
Lady Byng award
Player that best displays gentlemanly conduct
Reactions: A big night for Anze Kopitar as he not only takes home the Selke Trophy as the NHL's best defensive forward, but also gets the Lady Byng award. Kopitar played 81 games this season, logged more than 20 minutes of ice-time per game, was the the best defensive forward in the league, and still only took eight two-minute penalties (16 total penalty minutes) all season. -- Adam Gretz
Mark Messier leadership award
Oh, right. This is still a thing. For whatever reason, somebody at the NHL decided Mark Messier should decide who is a great leader and give him an award for it. This year, he selected Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators. There is really nothing else to add to this award because nobody can get inside of Mark Messier's head and figure out why he likes the leadership of Shea Weber over everybody else in the NHL. -- Adam Gretz