Goalies Set to Dominate NHL Again … At Awards Show
Carey Price better have his speeches ready because the Montreal Canadiens star could be in the spotlight more than once at the NHL Awards Show on Wednesday night, but he is not the only goaltender set to leave Las Vegas with a trophy.
Price is a shoo-in for the Vezina Trophy as the League’s best goaltender and a favourite to also win the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s most valuable player and the Ted Lindsay Award, given to the most outstanding player in a vote by the members of the NHL Players’ Association.
Nashville Predators starter Pekka Rinne and impending unrestricted free agent Devan Dubnyk are also up for the Vezina, but even if Dubnyk doesn’t win as the top goalie, there’s a chance he will go home with the Masterton Trophy for perseverance and dedication to hockey.
Also up for the Masterton is Ottawa Senators goaltender Andrew Hammond and Pittsburgh Penguins defensemen Kris Letang, though Chicago Blackhawks backup Scott Darling and Rinne were also strong candidates.
New York Rangers star Henrik Lundqvist is also a finalist for the NHL Foundation Player Award for his community service work, which included raising money by auctioning off game-worn masks co-designed by celebrity friends this season.
As for Price, he already has a share of the William M. Jennings Trophy with Corey Crawford of the Chicago Blackhawks as the No. 1 goalies on the team that gave up the fewest goals (189). He led the NHL and set a franchise record with 44 wins, and had a 1.96 goals-against average and .933 save percentage, becoming the first goalie to lead the League all three categories in the same season since Ed Belfour in 1990-91 for the Blackhawks. He is also the first goalie to be a finalist for the Hart Trophy since Lundqvist in 2012, and can become the first goalie to win it since former Montreal goalie Jose Theodore did in 2002. Based on the chatter leading up the awards, there’s a good chance he will.
Whether he should or not is another discussion, one InGoal writer Paul Campbell already delved into:
It’s a interesting in-depth series on the history and factors behind the NHL awards when it comes to goaltending, and ends in a conclusion many goaltenders may not agree with. Either way, it’s a great read before the awards are handed out for real in Las Vegas on Wednesday night.