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NHL Awards: One last look at the finalists

  • NHL Awards: One last look at the finalists

Have you forgotten who the NHL Award Finalists are? With the Awards set for June 22 in Las Vegas, it’s time to remind ourselves just what it was the about the finalists that got them to this spot…

Hart Trophy

For the player judged most valuable to his team.

Jamie Benn

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The power forward put up 41 goals and 48 assists while playing in all 82 games leading the Stars to the top of the Western Conference for the first time in 13 years. It was also the first time they won their division since 2005-06.

Benn finished third in the league in goals, and first in power-play goals (17) and points (30).

He is Dallas' first-ever Hart finalist and is also a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award.

Sidney Crosby

Crosby shook off a slow start to finish third in the league scoring with 85 points (36 goals, 49 points) in 80 games. His 21 goals and 31 assists in 44 games in the new year was more than anyone as the Penguins raced to finish second in the Eastern Conference, despite missing Evgeni Malkin for a significant period of time.

He was the only player this year to put up multiple point streaks of 10-plus games and his seven-game goal streak was a career high that was tied for the longest of any player this season.

This is Crosby's fifth time as a Hart Trophy finalist.

Patrick Kane

Kane exploded this season, leading the league in scoring basically from start to finish en route to being the first American to win the Art Ross Trophy.

The winger scored a career high 46 goals and 60 assists as the Blackhawks made the playoffs for the eighth straight season. There were only 18 games this season where he was held without a point.

From Oct. 17 to Dec. 13, he put together a 26-game point streak – the longest ever by an American-born player, the longest since the 1992-93 season (Mats Sundin: 30), and a franchise record.

Like Benn, Kane is also a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award. No Blackhawk has won since Stan Mikita in 1968.

Honourable mention: Carey Price

Vezina Trophy

For the goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at his position.

Braden Holtby

The Washington Capitals first true No. 1 in years has posted consecutive 40-win campaigns and tied legend Martin Brodeur's NHL record for wins in a single season with 48 - four more Ws than Carey Price had in 2014-15, when he won the Vezina and the Hart and anything else made of metal. That stat makes Holtby the one to beat.

The Capitals would not have claimed the Presidents' Trophy were it not for the 26-year-old from Lloydminster, Sask. The first-time Vezina finalist also ranked fifth in overall in goals-against average (2.20), sixth in saves (1,661) and eighth in save percentage (.922).

Ben Bishop

Healed up from a painful 2015 Stanley Cup Final, Big Ben's 35 wins arrived on the heels of his Lightning-record 40 wins in 2014-15. He surpassed Nikolai Khabibulin as the winningest goalie in club history, finishing with 115 for Tampa Bay.

Bishop posted an NHL-best 2.06 goals-against average and his .926 save percentage ranked second overall. Both numbers are career highs and single-season Tampa records. Not to mention six shutouts.

Jonathan Quick

Quick is so good, his backups graduate to become No. 1s elsewhere. The Kings' $58-million man was a workhorse of a Drew Doughty degree in 2015-16, pacing all netminders in appearances (68), starts (68) and minutes (4,034).

The 30-year-old two-time Cup winner finished second in wins with 40, snapping his own club record of 39 (2009-10).

Quick also finished fifth in saves (1,671), tied for fifth in shutouts (five), and seventh in goals-against average (2.22). He plays behind a world-class defense, which some say could hinder his chances.

Honorable mentions: Corey Crawford and Roberto Luongo.  

Calder Trophy

For the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition

Connor McDavid

Despite missing nearly half the season with a broken clavicle, Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid made a serious impact on the league and gave us a glimpse of the superstar he’ll become. He finished fourth in rookie scoring with 48 points in 45 games, but had the NHL’s third-best points per game rate – Patrick Kane and Jamie Benn had more points per game among players that played more than one game.

The first-overall pick from the 2015 NHL Draft became the ninth-youngest player in NHL history to have a five-point game when he destroyed the Maple Leafs in February. McDavid may become the first player in Oilers history to win the award.

 Artemi Panarin

The Chicago Blackhawks winger is the favorite to win the award after leading all rookies with 30 goals, 47 assists and 77 points. Panarin isn’t your typical NHL rookie. The undrafted 24-year-old agreed to terms with the Blackhawks last April after playing professionally in the KHL. If Panarin wins, he’ll be the first Blackhawks player to do so since his linemate Patrick Kane did in 2008.

 Shayne Gostisbehere

“Ghost Bear” took the hockey community by surprise. The Flyers defenseman was the 8th overall pick from 2012 led all rookie defensemen in goals (17), assists (29), points (46) even though he only played 64 games. He set an NHL record by becoming the first rookie blueliner to score four overtime goals and his 15-game point streak in January and February is a league record for a rookie defenseman. Gostisbehere could become the first player in his franchise’s history to win the Calder.

Honorable mention: Jack Eichel

Norris Trophy

To the defenseman who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-round ability in the position.

Brent Burns

The San Jose Sharks defenseman produced offensively as if he were a top forward, scoring 27 goals with 48 assists - both of which were franchise records for a defenseman

He also set a franchise mark for shots on goal (353) after logging a career-high 25:51 minutes of ice time per game.

The 31-year-old appeared in all 82 games for the second consecutive season and ranked among the league-leaders in several categories, including goals by a defenseman (first), points by a defenseman (second), and assists by a defenseman (third).

Drew Doughty

The Los Angeles Kings rearguard could be the best all-round defenseman. He had his best offensive season since 2009-10, scoring 14 goals with 37 assists while averaging over 28 minutes of ice time per game. The two-time Stanley Cup winner also posted a career-high plus-24 rating.

Doughty appeared in all 82 games for the Kings, one of the best defensive clubs throughout the regular season, and was effective on both power play and penalty kill.

The 26-year-old has long been regarded as one of the league’s best defenseman, but has never won the Norris Trophy.

Erik Karlsson

Karlsson is vying for this third Norris after a historic season.

The Ottawa Senators captain set single-season franchise records for both assists (66) and points (82) by a defenseman and has led the NHL in scoring by a defenseman in four of the last five years.

Similar to the other candidates, Karlsson is durable, playing in all 82 games for the third straight year and he led all players in time on ice, even-strength time, and average time on ice (28:52 minutes per game).

Impressively, Karlsson scored 21 more points than any of his teammates and was one of the best drivers of puck possession in the entire league.

Honorable mentions: Kris Letang, John Klingberg, Ryan Suter.

Mark Messier Award

For the player who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice, during the regular season

Ryan Getzlaf

Getzlaf  helped Anaheim secure its second consecutive Western Conference title this season. He hosts the annual Getzlaf Golf Shootout, which raised more than $300,000 this year for the charity CureDuchenne to raise awareness and fund research for those suffering from the progressive muscle-wasting disease.

He and teammate Corey Perry developed hockey in southern California through the Ducks' Learn to Play program, which offers free classes to first-time players between the ages of four and 12.

Andrew Ladd

Ladd set career highs with 38 assists and 62 points to propel the Jets to their best season and the first round of the NHL playoffs.

The Jets captain teamed up with Special Olympics, which offers sports training and competition to Manitobans with intellectual disabilities. He’s involved in fundraisers, meet-and-greets, floor hockey tutorials and more. He also presented medals at the recent Special Olympics Manitoba Games.

Jonathan Toews

Besides guiding the Blackhawks to its seventh consecutive playoff spot this year, Toews is known for actively participating in Make-A-Wish visits, the Four Feathers Golf Invitational and other team endeavors in the community.

He has served as the honorary chairperson of the Israel Idonije Fundraiser and supported the Winnipeg Foundation in creating its Nourishing Potential campaign.

He is also involved with Misericordia, a Chicago-based group that offers care for those with mild to profound developmental disabilities.

Ted Lindsay Award

For the most outstanding player in the NHL.

Jamie Benn

Benn followed up his Art Ross Trophy winning 2014-15 campaign by setting new career-highs in goals and points. The Victoria, B.C. native finished second in scoring with 89 points and third in goals with 41.

Benn finished second in both power-play goals (17) and points (30). Benn's 1.09 points per game average was also the league's second best.

The 26-year-old captained the Dallas Stars to a first-place finish in the Central Division and the Western Conference with a 50-23-9 record. He led all Stars forwards in average time-on-ice with 20:01.

Braden Holtby

Braden Holtby led the Washington Capitals to a Presidents' Trophy win for the second time in franchise history, appearing in 66 games.

Holtby set a franchise record with 48 wins, tying with Martin Brodeur's single-season record. The 26-year-old finished with a 2.20 goals-against average and a .922 save percentage, the NHL's fifth and eighth best marks, respectively.

Holtby is also a finalist for the Vezina Trophy.

Patrick Kane

Patrick Kane set career highs in goals (46), assists (60), and points (106) in 2015-16 en route to his first Art Ross Trophy.

The Buffalo, N.Y. native could become the first Chicago Blackhawks player and first American-born player to win the Ted Lindsay Award.

Kane finished first among all NHL players in points-per-game (1.29) and power-play points (37). He also finished second in goals (46), tied for second in power-play goals (17), tied for second in game-winning goals (9), and totaled the league's third highest mark in assists (60).

Jack Adams Award

For the head coach who contributed the most to his team’s success.

Gerard Gallant

Gerard Gallant’s second season with the Florida Panthers saw him guide the team to a first-place finish in the Atlantic Division with a 47-26-9 record and 103 points, both franchise records.

The Panthers also set franchise-best marks for longest winning streak (12 games), longest home winning streak (seven games), and longest road winning streak (six games).

Lindy Ruff

The Dallas Stars finished with the best record (50-23-9, 109 points) in the Western Conference under Ruff’s guidance in 2015-16.

The Central Divsion and Western Conference champions led the NHL in goals for (267).

Ruff won the Jack Adams following the 2005-06 season with the Buffalo Sabres. This is Ruff's third nomination for the award, having earned back-to-back nods in 2006 and 2007 with the Sabres.

Barry Trotz

Barry Trotz led the Washington Capitals to the Presidents' Trophy with a 56-18-8 record and 120 points, 11 more than the second place overall Stars.

The Capitals set a franchise record with 56 wins and finished in the top five in power-play percentage (5th, 21.9 per cent) and penalty killing (2nd, 85.2 per cent). Washington finished with the league's second-best goals-against mark with 193, trailing the Anaheim Ducks by a single goal. Washington's plus-59 goal differential was top in the league.

Honourable mention: Mike Sullivan

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