NHL: A Look Back on the 2019 NHL Awards
Well after the Stanley Cup was won by the St. Louis Blues. It is time to hand out some more hardware. The NHL awards happen last week on the 19th in Las Vegas. Most of the awards are hand out to the players with a couple going to coaches and general managers. Throughout the year we see what players and personnel will take home their respected trophies. Here is my reaction to the winners of the NHL awards.
Hart Trophy League MVP Nikita Kucherov Tampa Bay Lightning
Kucherov was one of the best players in the 2018-19 season. He had 128 points 41 goals and 87 assists. Kucherov broke Alexander Mogilny’s single-season record 127 points. He now holds the record for a Russian born player. I agree with this pick he more than did enough this past season.
Norris Trophy Best Defenseman Mark Giordano Calgary Flames
Giordano finished second in points amongst defenseman. He had 74 points 17 goals and 57 assists. This was a career high for him. Giordano had the highest plus 39 ratings. Prior to this past season, he had 38 and 39 in the past two seasons. I agree with this pick Giordano set the mark for the blueliners this year.
Veniza Trophy Best Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy Tampa Bay Lightning
Vasilevskiy won 18 of his final 21 starts. He helped the Lightning tie the record for wins in a season 62 wins. The Lightning won the presidents trophy with 128 points. He dedicated the trophy to the team. Vasilevskiy leads the NHL with 39 wins, tied for 4th in shutouts, and had 2.40 goals against average. He missed part of the season with a foot injury. This selection was one that I thought could have been someone else but congrats to him.
Calder Trophy Rookie of the Year Elias Pettersson Vancouver Canucks
Pettersson had 66 points with seven winning goals. He had 28 goals and 38 assists. Pettersson in 71 games passed Pavel Bure and Ivan Hlinka who had both had 60 points. He was one of the few bright moments for the Canucks. Pettersson is the 31st player to end the season leading rookies in goals, assists, and points. He deserved to win this award.
Selke Trophy Best Defensive Forward Ryan O’Reilly St. Louis Blues
O’Reilly already won the Con-Smyth Trophy for MVP in the playoffs. He led the NHL in face-off wins. O’Reilly was fourth in takeaways and a plus-22. He played in all 82 games he had 77 points 28 goals and 49 assists. O’Reilly help leads the Blues to their first Stanley Cup. He more than deserved the trophy.
Lady Byng Most Gentlemanly Player Aleksander Barkov Florida Panthers
Barkov only committed 4 minor penalties. He had been in the running three out of the last four years. This was the first year he won it. Barkov set a Panthers center record with 96 points 35 goals and 61 assists. He passed Pavel Bure which had 94 points. He was second in takeaways with 100. With this one it about the time he wins the award.
Masterton Trophy Dedication to Hockey Robin Lehner New York Islanders
Lehner was more than deserving to win this award. He battled his demons with mental health and addiction. Lehner was in a downward spiral while with the Buffalo Sabers. He decided to get better and get help. Lehner got a fresh start with the New York Islanders. He helped the Islanders make it all the way to the second round of the playoffs. This is something that we all need to start looking at because there are people out there that need help.
Ted Lindsay Award MVP voted on by the NHLPA Nikita Kucherov Tampa Bay Lightning
Kucherov won league MVP. He may not be the best in interviews, but he deserved both trophies he won. He and the Lightning, of course, wanted more. This award is voted on by his peers. What an honor to be voted on by the players that play with you and against you. Like the MVP he deserved to win it.
King Clancy Trophy Leadership On and Off the Ice Jason Zucker Minnesota Wild
Zucker and his wife Carly donated the University of Minnesota Masonic Children Hospital. They opened a broadcast wing in the hospital in 2017. This allowed children and their families to watch the Minnesota Wild games. It started with a donation $160,000 he asked for donations by the 16’s for his jersey number. The foundation raised 1.2 million dollars in less than 12 months. He deserved the trophy for his leadership on and off the ice.
Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award Wayne Simmonds Nashville Predators
Simmonds worked with the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Program and invited the military to home games while he was in Philadelphia. He used his time to build hockey starting with youth. Any game needs to have the youth to continue its long history. He was a board member with Ed Snider Youth Hockey foundation for the last 6 years. Simmonds more than deserved this award.
Willie O’Ree Community Hero Award Rico Phillips
Mr. Phillips founded the Flint Inner City Youth Program. He is a firefighter in Flint, Michigan. His boss wasn’t surprised when Phillips requested time off to create a youth hockey program. This was helping an economically disadvantaged city. Phillips but everything he had into it. He deserved to win this award for his love for the city of Flint.
Jack Adams Award Coach of the Year Barry Trotz New York Islanders
Many people questioned why the Washington Capitals fire Barry Trotz after would winning the Stanley Cup. Well, he joined the New York Islanders after that. The Islanders earned 23 more points this year than the year before. They reached the second round of the playoffs. This selection I really disagree with. This should have gone to Craig Berube of the St. Louis Blues. He coached the Blues from the last place in January to the Stanley Cup.
General Manager of the Year Don Sweeny Boston Bruins
The Bruins only finished second to the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Eastern Conference. They also would make it all the way to the Stanley Cup finals and lose in game 7 to the St. Louis Blues. The Bruins finished the regular season with 107 points. He was proud of his player despite coming up one game short. He said was hard to watch them be defeated.
Do you agree with the winners? Leave a comment below.
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