NHL Awards: Andersen, Gibson, Holtby Take Home Honors
The NHL awards are official.
In April, the league announced that Anaheim Ducks goaltenders Frederik Andersen and John Gibson won the William Jennings Trophy. It is awarded to the goaltenders whose team allowed the fewest goals in the regular season. A goalie must play at least 25 games in order to be eligible for the award and if the winning team has two goalies who meet that criteria, they share it. In 43 games, Andersen posted a .928 save percentage at 5v5 and Gibson posted a .918 in 40 games.
The Jennings award was not decided until the final regular season game between the Ducks and the Washington Capitals. Going into the game, Braden Holtby and the Capitals led the Jennings race by a single goal. When Anaheim won that game by a score of 2-0, they took the goals against title as well.
Braden Holtby was not deprived of his spotlight moment, however. He was awarded the Vezina Trophy for the best goaltender. The Vezina trophy is voted on by the league’s General Managers. In 66 games, Holtby posted 48 wins, three shutouts, a .921 save percentage, and a 2.20 Goals Against Average.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) June 23, 2016
Usually Vezina voting follows a certain pattern. Finalists generally play at least 41 games with a winning record for a playoff team. Beyond that, winners are usually near the top of the leaderboard in save percentage and goals against average. It has been some time since the NHL wins leader has won the award without meeting the other criteria.
This year, however, the award isn’t really based on the numbers. The three finalists were 7th (Holtby, .931), 8th (Bishop, .930), and 10th (Quick, .928) in 5v5 save percentage. They were 1st (Bishop, .927), 4th (Holtby, .922), and 11th (Quick, .918) in overall save percentage. Some of the strongest statistical performances this season — from Corey Crawford, Marc-Andre Fleury, Steve Mason, and Henrik Lundqvist — weren’t recognized.
That’s because this year Holtby matched Martin Brodeur’s single-season wins record set in 2006-07. And that, most likely, was enough.
Maybe the coolest pic ever. pic.twitter.com/e5yRnh4W3N
— Mitch Korn (@mitchkorncaps) June 23, 2016