“Huge open” sometimes describes NHL award races presently of yr. A recency bias in end-of-season voting typically results in a late-surging participant taking dwelling main – as Taylor Corridor did the 2017-18 Hart Trophy after an epic second-half scoring streak helped hoist his workforce into the playoffs. So the mid-season trophy favorites don’t at all times find yourself the winners.
The 2019-20 awards race won’t observe that sample, nonetheless. The favorites shall be powerful to topple on the second half. Our nine-member editorial employees solid ballots for our prime three candidates to win the Hart, Vezina, Norris and Calder Trophies and Jack Adams Award – and a lot of the votes (a) weren’t shut, with one participant operating away with the award or (b) had been shut however solely between a pair candidates. Issues are wanting top-heavy this yr.
Right here’s a take a look at the outcomes. First-place votes had been price three factors, second-place votes had been price two, and third-place votes had been price one, that means 27 factors qualifies as a unanimous first-place victory.
HART TROPHY (Most respected participant)
1. Connor McDavid, Oilers (20 factors)2. Nathan MacKinnon, Avalanche (19 factors)three. Jack Eichel, Sabres (four factors)
The previous couple seasons, McDavid was nonetheless broadly acknowledged as the sport’s greatest participant, however his workforce lacking the playoffs damage his case within the eyes of sufficient Hart voters to value him the award. With the Oilers holding a playoff place proper now, the standings aren’t the best risk to his probabilities this time. Leon Draisaitl is, because the presence of the league’s prime two scorers on the identical workforce may break up some votes. The opposite risk, in fact, is MacKinnon, who has carried the Avs on his shoulders throughout some damage absences for his all-world linemates, Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog. MacKinnon has greater than double the factors of his closest teammate. Eichel has lastly busted out into the elite scoring tier, as he was at all times projected to, however he’s a protracted shot for MVP standing with Buffalo slipping out of the playoff hunt.
Additionally receiving votes: Brad Marchand, John Carlson, David Pastrnak, Artemi Panarin, Auston Matthews
VEZINA TROPHY (Greatest goaltender)
1. Connor Hellebuyck, Jets (22 factors)T-2. Ben Bishop, Stars (7 factors)T-2. Darcy Kuemper, Coyotes (7 factors)
Hellebuyck doesn’t lead the league within the apparent classes reminiscent of goals-against common or save proportion, however he’s been glorious on a Jets workforce that misplaced Jacob Trouba, Dustin Byfuglien, Tyler Myers and Ben Chiarot from its blueline in the summertime. The depleted ‘D’ has yielded a way more troublesome workload for Hellebuyck, which makes his efficiency all of the extra exceptional.
Amongst 31 goalies with at the very least 1,000 minutes at 5-on-5 this season, he faces the fourth most pictures towards per 60 minutes and has the fourth-highest anticipated objectives towards per 60, but he nonetheless has the third-highest general 5-on-5 SP at .933. He’s third within the league in objectives saved above common per 60 minutes. If the Jets didn’t have such a putrid penalty kill, Hellebuyck’s floor numbers could be stronger, however he’s been excellent anyway regardless of a monstrous workload. No goalie has performed extra video games or confronted extra pictures this season.
Tied for a distant second, Bishop has been the most effective goalie within the league for the reason that begin of final season and appears poised to be a Vezina finalist for a fourth time, whereas Kuemper has carried over his nice second-half play from final season.
Additionally receiving votes: Tristan Jarry, Tuukka Rask, Frederik Andersen, Jordan Binnington, Semyon Varlamov
NORRIS TROPHY (Greatest defenseman)
1. John Carlson, Capitals (27 factors)2. Roman Josi, Predators (13 factors)three. Dougie Hamilton, Hurricanes (11 factors)
Right here’s our first unanimous vote. It actually couldn’t have been simpler. Not solely has Carlson performed most of this season on a scoring tempo of higher than 100 factors, however he additionally performs near 25 minutes an evening and blocks pictures with aplomb. At this level, he’s as necessary to the Capitals as any participant – even Alex Ovechkin.
In most different seasons, the work Josi and Hamilton have performed would vault them to the highest of the Norris race. Josi, who features as a roving fourth ahead on the ice, is producing the most effective numbers of his profession, whereas Hamilton, lastly getting an opportunity to play extra (nearly a four-minute enhance yr over yr!), has been an all-around juggernaut of goal-scoring, shutdown means and possession dominance.
Additionally receiving votes: Alex Pietrangelo, Victor Hedman, Thomas Chabot
CALDER TROPHY (Greatest rookie)
1. Cale Makar, Avalanche (27 factors)2. Quinn Hughes, Canucks (17 factors)three. Victor Olofsson, Sabres (9 factors)
This vote was so concentrated that just one poll even named a fourth rookie. Makar, the brainy, dynamic offensive blueliner in comparison with Erik Karlsson popping out of the 2017 draft, is past residing as much as the hype. Makar is scoring at a price not seen amongst rookie blueliners since Brian Leetch in 1988-89. Hughes, equally small and gifted with the puck, would even be on tempo for the most effective offensive season by a rookie defenseman in years if Makar didn’t exist. Every man sits in his personal tier. Olofsson, the mature 24-year-old rookie armed with a deadly shot, has performed good harm taking part in with Eichel, however a multi-week damage absence may open the door for one more freshman to earn a finalist nod by yr’s finish.
Additionally receiving votes: John Marino
JACK ADAMS AWARD (Coach of the yr)
1. Craig Berube, Blues (11 factors)2. Rick Tocchet, Coyotes (10 factors)three. Sheldon Keefe, Maple Leafs (9 factors)
The Blues got here from final place to win the Stanley Cup underneath Berube’s tutelage final season. This time round, there’s no sneaking up. They’ve been front-runners within the standings all yr, which is especially spectacular contemplating they’ve been profitable with out their greatest goal-scorer, Vladimir Tarasenko. Berube deserves a whole lot of credit score for that. Tocchet, as well-liked among the many gamers as any coach within the league, has the Desert Canine creeping towards their first playoff look since 2011-12. They do an awesome job limiting high-quality scoring probabilities in his system. The Leafs seem to have unlocked their huge offensive potential since Keefe took over for Mike Babcock in November. Keefe has straight defied Babcock in so many roster tweaks (taking part in stars extra, demoting Cody Ceci, and so on.) that it’s troublesome to not attribute nearly all of the workforce’s current success to the teaching change.
Additionally receiving votes: Barry Trotz, Mike Sullivan, Todd Reirden, Dave Tippett, Jared Bednar, Gerard Gallant, Bruce Cassidy
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Tags: awards, nhlConnect: In regards to the AuthorMatt LarkinMatt Larkin is a senior author at The Hockey Information and has been a part of the workforce since 2011. He is your one-stop store for deep-dive participant interviews, predictions, statistics, fantasy participant rankings, participant security and hair ideas. Catch him weekly as host of The Hockey Information Dwell and The Hockey Information Podcast.