March 21 2016 09:00AM
On paper, this seems like a really easy trophy to hand out. Braden Holtby is challenging the league’s single-season win record, and as a result, he should certainly be running away with the award. While it’s true that he probably will, because those who vote for these awards tend to overvalue basic and meaningless statistics like wins, there are goalies in the league who have had much, much more impressive seasons than Holtby has.
The Vezina Trophy is meant to be awarded to the goaltender who is adjudged to be the best at the position. With that considered, we need to break down how each goalie fares based on what their team gives them to truly determine who the best goalie in the league is. Last year, Carey Price was magnificent not only because he had a lot of wins and an excellent save percentage, but because the Canadiens didn’t make his life very easy. This year, while the results may be surprising, there are a few goalies who are being overlooked who have been absolutely fantastic despite their teams allowing them to be peppered with high danger chances all the time.
March 18 2016 11:49AM
The Calder Memorial Trophy is awarded to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the National Hockey league. After a draft featuring two phonemes last spring, it was expected that this was going to be a two horse race between Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel for rookie of the year. With McDavid missing significant time thanks to injury and the rise of a couple of unexpected late bloomers, the safe bets are pretty much out the window.
Nation World HQ
March 18 2016 05:00AM
How you fix the Draft Lottery, making sense of the Expansion Draft, expected Salary Cap for next year, Dan Hamhuis enjoys mentor role, Anthony Mantha getting his shot, Flames cap future is scary, Oilers speak the harsh truth, McGrattan fights Maggio again and more in this week's Nation Roundup brought to you by DraftKings
March 16 2016 08:03AM
The NHL Draft lottery is broken, and it's the Edmonton Oilers' fault. General managers all around the league seem to agree with this notion and have already begun discussing ways in which the lottery could be updated or amended so that winners can't keep winning over and over (and over) again.
March 13 2016 09:27AM
The Hart Trophy, or the NHL's Most Valuable Player, is awarded to the player who is judged most valuable to his team. Now, this wording creates a bit of a misunderstanding. Does this mean that it should go to whatever player would have the most significant impact if they were removed from their team and swapped with a replacement-level player? Or is it simply the best player in the league in any given year? Well, it can't just be that, because it's against the rules to award it to a player on a team that doesn't make the playoffs. So is it looking at who's the best player on the best team in the league?
To me, it's the first one. Which player is irreplaceable? Who would have the most detrimental negative impact if they were removed from a team, and in contrast, who could have the biggest positive impact on a bad team if they were added to the roster? Of course, the people who vote in these things don't tend to see it that way, and the Hart is usually just awarded to the best player in the league that year.
Anyways, based on what's happened through the first three-quarters of the season, here are my picks for the NHL's Most Valuable Player.