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Predicting the NHL Awards: Who Takes Home Major Trophies?

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The NHL Awards will take place Tuesday night in Tampa Bay, where the Calder Memorial Trophy (best rookie in the league), the Hart Memorial Trophy (most valuable player), the James Norris Memorial Trophy (best defenseman in the game), and the Vezina Trophy (best league goaltender) and the Ted Lindsay Award (most outstanding player in the league as voted by NHL players). Here is this writer’s choice for the most deserving candidates:

Calder Trophy

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Finalists: Michael Bunting, Toronto; Moritz Seider, Detroit; Trevor Zegras, Anaheim

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Who should win: Zayder

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Why: There’s a lot to be said for Banting’s (23 goals, 63 points) and Zegras (23 goals, 61 points) offense in their first full season in the NHL, but Zayder’s below-average performance with the Red Wings puts him in first place. winner circle. The 21-year-old German had 43 assists and 50 points, leading his teammates in playing time (averaging 23:02 per game) and showing strong physicality. Zayder’s defensive instincts are already top-notch, and he’ll be the cornerstone of Detroit’s defense for at least a decade. Zegras and Bunting are effective players – in Zegras’ case, even stars – but Moritz will soon be in contention for the Norris Trophy.

Hart Trophy

Finalists: Auston Matthews, Toronto; Connor McDavid, Edmonton; Igor Shesterkin, New York Rangers.

Who should win: Shesterkin

Why: There are good arguments for each of Hart’s three finalists this year, but if we go by the definition of a trophy – the player most valuable to his team – it should be Shesterkin taking home his first Hart. Yes, McDavid set a new career personal best with 123 points in 80 games, and Matthews hit 60 goals for the first time in his NHL career, but if you take both of those players off their teams, then the Oilers and the Maple Leafs will still have teams above average. On the other hand, the Rangers might not have made the playoffs if not for Shesterkin’s heroism. The Ted Lindsay Award, voted by NHL players and given to the “most outstanding” NHL player, should go to Matthews or McDavid (both finalists), but in terms of irreplaceable value, Shesterkin deserves credit. Hart this year.

Ted Lindsey Award

Finalists: Roman Josie, Nashville; Auston Matthews, Toronto; Connor McDavid, Edmonton

Who should win: Matthews

Why: While both Josie and McDavid had amazing years and were outstanding in their own ways, Matthews became the first NHL player to score 60 goals since Lightning superstar Steven Stamkos scored 60 goals in the 2011-2012 campaign. And he did it by missing nine regular season games. The 24-year-old Leafs center has earned the respect of his fellow footballers and while voting for this award may be the closest of any award, Matthews has taken his game to the next level and should be commended for it.

Norris Trophy

Finalists: Victor Hedman, Tampa Bay; Roman Josie, Nashville; Cale Makar, Colorado

Who should win: Josie

Why: While Makar’s star continues to skyrocket this season in the Stanley Cup playoffs, the Norris Trophy goes to the best blueliner in the regular season, and this season it was Josie. Both Hedman (20 goals, 85 points) and Makar (28 goals, 86 points) had their best offensive years, as did Yosi, and he was on a completely different level, with a superb 73 assists and 96 points. Hedman and Josie have a victory over Norris under their belts and Makar looks set to dominate the Norris vote in the coming years, but Josie, at age 32, beat his previous career best by 31 points, averaging 25:33. ice time per game. This gives him an advantage over Makar and Hedman.

Vezina Trophy

Finalists: Jacob Markstrom, Calgary; Juse Saros, Nashville; Igor Shesterkin, New York Rangers.

Who should win: Shesterkin

Why: As noted above, Shesterkin had a phenomenal season in Manhattan, leading all NHL starting goaltenders in shooting percentage (.935) and goal average (2.07). Markstrom (0.922 SP, 2.22 GAA) and Saros (0.918 SP, 2.64 GAA) were also high performers, but Shesterkin was a terrific workhorse (36-13-4 record) who was always razor sharp for the Blues. shirts.” The 26-year-old’s breathtaking performances have changed the world for Rangers and he has earned what is likely to be his first of many Vezins.


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