Blueshirt Banter Awards 2008-09 Regular Season
James Mirtle over at From The Rink asked each of the blogs to come up with a list of who we would nominate from our respective teams and nominees for the entire league for each of the following awards:
Hart Trophy: Awarded to the player judged to be most valuable to his team.
Norris Trophy: Awarded to the defensive player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-around ability at the position.
Vezina Trophy: Awarded to the goaltender judged to be the best at his position.
Calder: Awarded to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in his first year in the NHL.
James posted them all on his site, and I wanted to share my selections with you. Three of them were no-brainers, but the other two I figure you guys might have different opinions. Here we go:
Hart Trophy: Henrik Lundqvist. My 2 year old daughter could have picked this one for me.
Norris Trophy: Dan Girardi. This was a tough one. It naturally came down to Girardi, Mara, and Staal, but when I took a close look at the numbers, hits, blocked shots, takeaways, I gave Girardi the slightest of edges, and I do mean slightest. If you could see the piece of scrap paper I have here with the names written on it, you can see I wrote "Mara", "Staal", "Redden" (that was just to make myself giggle), and finally "Girardi". I do believe Marc Staal is a very good defenseman, and may very well become a great defenseman, but I gave the nod to Girardi here. Staal will get his share in years to come, I am sure.
Vezina: Lundqvist. Again, I could have passed this off to the diaper department in my house.
Calder Trophy: Lauri Korpikoski. Seeing as how the other rookies who have played for the Rangers this season have by my calculations played a total of about 10 games, this one was by default if nothing else.
Selke: Blair Betts. Chris Drury got some consideration here, as did Freddie Sjostrom, who I really like as a defensive forward, but I went with Betts, because I think he is probably the least talked about Ranger, but one of the most important. He is the main reason for the Rangers PK success, and you gotta love his durability, 78 games played for a guy who never saw a shot he wouldn't throw his body in front of.
As for my NHL nominees:
Hart: Alex Ovechkin Washington Capitals
Norris: Mike Green Washington Capitals
Vezina: Evgeni Nabokov San Jose Sharks
Calder: Steve Mason Columbus Blue Jackets
Selke: Mikko Koivu Minnesota Wild