Monthly Archives: June 2010

Rewards at the NHL awards

The NHL awards were held Wednesday in Las Vegas Wednesday. No surprises really, just a typical nice guy awards show without much hoopla despite the opening by Snoop Dogg.

The Calder Memorial Trophy:  Tyler Myers

Tyler Myers was an amazing rookie. I grabbed him as a free agent on both of my fantasy teams and was praising the guy all year. He wasn’t the Sabre player I expected to be the breakout candidate but his tenacity and wandering defense make him tops on my list. He clocked the most ice time of any Sabres player

Frank J. Selke Trophy: Pavel Datsyuk

The best defensive forward, no duh. Can he do anything wrong? He was criticized for the lackluster performance for the Red Wings, but he took off and kept the playoffs in reach. Can’t deny his talents and lasting abilities for the Wings franchise.

Ted Lindsay Award- Alex Ovechkin

The more Alex speaks, the more I like his nonchalant attitude. He kept talking despite the music, the next presenter and cues to leave the stage. Alex doesn’t care and wants his time because he’s earned it.

Jack Adams Award-Dave Tippett

This was a well-deserved award to the head coach of the Phoenix Coyotes, who turned this group around with the vision to create a playoff team. The Coyotes have been decent in recent years, but lacked the leadership to take it to the next level. With the ownership and attendance woes in the desert, the players played with heart and determination to make the team noticeable.

Vezina Trophy-Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller fans that believed he was the best goaltender at the winter games felt losing the gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics was a blow. Miller knows he’s that good but is humble. He’s the best of the best.

Bill Masterston Memorial Trophy-Jose Theodore
With 23 straight games unbeaten, Theodore somehow flew under the radar on some fantasy teams. But not mine. Theodore has had a few bumpy years of play and personal tragedy that made this award a confirmation to his ability to maintain composure in net. Most of us would have completely checked out.

King Clancy Memorial Trophy- Shane Doan

Leadership on and off the ice, and just a nice guy landed Doan this award. I met Doan outside of Coyotes practice signing autographs with his son. Mothers love him because he is involved in the community and cares about the children and their growth. Fans love him because he cares for their community.

Lady Byng Memorial Trophy -Martin St. Louis
It’s about time St. Louis won this recognition as the epitome of sportsmanship. Hard worker, solid numbers and great attitude make St. Louis a fantastic fantasy pick for you roster but get him quick.

Mark Messier Leadership award- Sidney Crosby

This is a new award and is evidence of how well Messier’s internship with the Rangers has influence the NHL. Any openings? Is Messier passing on his magic to Crosby or does Messier want some of Crosby’s magic?

Norris Trophy- Duncan Keith
Since the Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup, I’m not surprised with this pick. Any player who sacrifices seven teeth during the Cup run should get something big!

Hart Memorial Trophy-Henrik Sedin
Tough competition here- Ovechkin and Crosby. The Swede walked away with the prize and kudos for the great year that the Vancouver Canucks had.

Congratulations Chicago!

The Chicago Blackhawks are the new Stanley Cup champions, and as a salute, I’ve compiled my thoughts throughout the season on the talent in Chicago.

Norris Trophy Candidate for best defenseman led directly to Duncan Keith who ranked second with career highs in goals (14), assists (55) and points (69). Keith played all 82 games this season for the third time in his five-years with the NHL. Drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2002 NHL draft, Keith went in the second round as the 54th overall pick. Keith also won a gold medal with Team Canada at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver.

Playing for the Team USA was Patrick Kane who drew more attention to the talent of the Blackhawks. Out of all the wingers, Kane was an anticipated star on the roster for crowds in Vancouver. Playing for the talented young Chicago Blackhawks, Kane has emerged with 64 points this year and a plus 17 rating.  He’s good and doesn’t make mistakes.

The Preseason reports could not ignore the emerging Blackhawks as Cup contenders. My pre-season rant of the Chicago Blackhawks- Take no prisoners.  Out for blood.  Now that the Hawks have Marian Hossa the team should be amazing. Right?  Let’s hope so after all the hoopla surrounding the team of Toews, Kane, Keith and some other good players that don’t get noticed as much:  Dave Bolland, Andrew Ladd, and Brent Seabrook.  Deep-dish pizzazz or digging deeper into a cheesy situation.

But one cannot ignore the quality players on the Chicago roster- great players for great fantasy teams. The stand-out for me this year was noted twice by me as a favorable fantasy pick:

Troy Brouwer (RW) Chicago Blackhawks.   If you don’t own a Blackhawk player, shame on you!  Pick one up now.  Brouwer is only 12% owned and may be your best Hawk bet right now as most of the team already has a spot on rosters.  His play has caught the attention of fantasy writer Matt Romig.

Troy Brouwer (RW) Chicago Blackhawks.   Chicago fans have had their down time, but this year the Hawks are a contending team who could be a challenge for San Jose.  Brouwer has been scoring and posted 19 PIMs in one game if you have a league where PIMs count.

Going into the playoffs, many hockey fans were not surprised by the Chicago run.The Blackhawks have been building from a dusty past. The surge in strength skipped a generation and is now a rip-roaring party for the new generation of Blackhawks fans. Dustin Bfugylien is the most underrated player on the team. His name is mentioned as a great player, but in the past he’s been a hit or miss. Now, his contribution to the team can explode further as he lends might and confidence to the game.

Captain Jonathan Toews has created cohesion within the team. Each game holds a goal, an assist or a hit from any one of the guys. The unsung hero is Joel Quenneville leaving the basement Avs and culminating in a conference championship two years after taking over in Chicago. And he’s going to the Stanley Cup playoffs. And Toews was named MVP and Stanley Cup Champion