Posted On Wednesday, 06.20.2012 / 11:01 PM

By Steven Stamkos -  Special to / - Steven Stamkos NHL Awards player blog

Stamkos: Malkin deserved both awards

Stamkos blogs from NHL Awards

Lightning All-Star forward and Hart Trophy finalist Steven Stamkos shares his thoughts from the 2012 NHL Awards in Las Vegas.


LAS VEGAS -- OK, so I didn't win the Hart Trophy or the Ted Lindsay Award. Sure it's disappointing, but I didn't really expect to win either, so the hopes weren't really crushed when I heard the results.

Evgeni Malkin had a dominant season. He deserves both.

It's just an honor in itself to be nominated for those awards. With the players in this League, to be recognized as a top-three player with Malkin and Henrik Lundqvist is rewarding in itself.

Obviously, I would have loved to win one of them, but I knew that not making the playoffs was going to hurt my chances. Obviously, Geno had an unbelievable season and that was going to be a season tough to beat regardless if we made the playoffs or not. But when you do help your team get into the playoffs, it definitely helps your chances.

Still, it was still an exciting year. I had a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to having another season like that -- with a playoff berth included in it.

As for the show, I thought it was the best I have attended. It gets bigger and better every year. The venue was great. And, of course, I got to get in the show a little bit.

Let me be totally honest -- I had no clue about that "Dancing With the Stars" bit. Cheryl Burke was doing a scene beside me and I saw the teleprompter, saw my name, and I was like, 'Oh no, I might have to get up here.' My face probably turned a couple of shades of red, but at least I didn't drop her.

She made me dip her -- at least that's what I think they call the move in dancing -- and I was on a little bit of an incline there, so I was a little worried, but I didn't drop her. Man, if I did, I probably would have gotten sued by "Dancing With the Stars." Who knows? Thankfully, I didn't. That definitely caught me off guard.

Overall, it was just an amazing experience. Any time you get a chance to come to these awards it's an honor, and to get nominated for two MVP awards -- obviously I would have loved to win one of them, but maybe it's some motivation for next time. I enjoyed the moment and enjoyed the experience with the family members that came down. I had a blast.

Posted On Wednesday, 06.20.2012 / 2:47 PM

By Steven Stamkos -  Special to / - Steven Stamkos NHL Awards player blog

Winning Hart would complete great trip

LAS VEGAS -- Another night in Vegas is behind me and it went well. We went to a nice dinner as a family and I played some blackjack with my dad.

That's my game when I'm in Vegas. I love blackjack, and my dad is very good at it, so he gives me tips and pointers all the time. It went well last night, but we always say we have to wait until the end of the trip to see what the damage is before we can form an opinion on how it all went.

Maybe at the end of this trip I'll be a Hart Trophy winner. I'm not sure, and I'm up against two really good players and competitors in Evgeni Malkin and Pekka Rinne, but I'm competitive and I want to win.

You don't know how many times you're going to get an opportunity to even be a finalist for something this big, and when you're there and you're that close you just want to get it done. People have asked me if I'm nervous and I swear I'm not, but I'm definitely anxious and I want to really enjoy this day and make some memories.

Posted On Tuesday, 06.19.2012 / 8:27 PM

By Steven Stamkos -  Special to / - Steven Stamkos NHL Awards player blog

More fun to be in Vegas this time

LAS VEGAS -- It's still kind of surreal being here -- but I'm definitely a lot more comfortable being in this situation now.

My first year here I was 20 years old and I had just tied Sidney Crosby for the Rocket Richard Trophy. My eyes were wide open on that one, and I was pretty nervous even though I knew I had the award already. But now that I've been here a few years, you learn to take in the moment and soak it in. You never know if you're going to get the chance to be here again with all the best talent in the League.

My family is here with me this time, so we're trying to cherish it together. It's a lot of fun.