Perseverance and dedication were commonplace during the Stanley Cup Playoffs last spring when Philadelphia Flyers forward Ian Laperriere returned to the lineup 32 days after getting hit in the face with a slap shot and Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith resumed activity in the same game he lost numerous teeth after taking a puck to the mouth.
Both were inspiring storylines throughout last season's entire postseason run for fans and players in Philadelphia and Chicago -- the two teams that would ultimately meet in the Cup Final. Laperriere and Keith each overcame adversity and inspired teammates and fans in the city they represented.
Winning the James Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenseman takes a mix of skills.
Not only should the winner be an elite player in his own zone, he has to be a substantial contributor when his team has the puck. He has to be able to move the puck quickly with forecheckers breathing down his neck, help run the power play and be able to play large chunks of minutes at a high level night in and night out.
There are a number of fine candidates who offer a mixture of skills and contribute to their teams in different ways.
Any discussion about the Hart Trophy and determining who is the NHL’s most valuable player is going to include arguments based on timing.
Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby was the runaway favorite for the award at the season’s midpoint as the most dominant player en route to a potentially historic campaign. A concussion derailed his chances, though he may still end up in the top 10 of the voting despite missing half the season.
Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos assumed the frontrunner position as Crosby’s absence continued, but eventually his goal-scoring prowess -- what had pushed him to the top -- also went missing. Stamkos’ final totals (45 goals, 91 points) are splendid, but a League MVP candidate at forward needs to score more than 7 goals in the final 31 games of the season.
The Lady Byng Memorial Trophy is given to the "player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability." For a while, the Lady Byng looked like it should have been renamed the "Pavel Datsyuk Trophy" -- Detroit's star center won it four times in a row from 2006-09.
But Tampa Bay's Martin St. Louis ended Datsyuk's reign last year, and with even better offensive numbers in 2010-11, there's no reason he shouldn't repeat.
Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning -- What can you say about a player who has more game-winning goals (7) than minor penalties (6)? St. Louis won the Lady Byng last season, ending his three-year streak as runner-up, and there's no reason he shouldn't do it again.
It was less than one year ago when the Caps were ousted in the opening round of the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs after racking up 54 wins and 121 points during the regular season. But Jaroslav Halak and the Montreal Canadiens managed to eliminate Washington in what was a wild seven-game series.
But after a rocky first half of this season, McPhee's Caps have found their way. Under the guidance of coach Bruce Boudreau, Washington -- which received some late-season help from the likes of Jason Arnott thanks to McPhee's diligence -- once again enters the postseason as the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference
As the NHL season drew to a close Sunday evening, a tense race saw the defending-champion Blackhawks grab the final postseason berth in the West when Minnesota defeated Dallas 5-3. The stage is now set for the Stanley Cup Playoffs to begin Wednesday night, but some of the prizes have already been won.
With the end of the season, the Art Ross Trophy, the Williams Jennings Trophy and the Maurice Richard Trophy -- which are dependent on statistics -- have been decided, with the winners to be honored at the 2011 NHL Awards in Las Vegas on June 22. Seeing as how the Vancouver Canucks took this year's Presidents' Trophy with 117 points, two of the three awards may as well get a blue-and-green paint job.
Three members of the Vancouver Canucks, who helped their club capture the Presidents' Trophy for posting the NHL's best record, have added individual awards as the 2010-11 regular-season schedule concluded today. Left wing Daniel Sedin won his first career Art Ross Trophy as NHL scoring leader, while Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider earned the William Jennings Trophy as the goaltenders on the club allowing the fewest goals.
NEW YORK – The stars of the National Hockey League will come together with celebrities from music, stage and screen for a celebration of hockey at the star-studded 2011 NHL® Awards on Wednesday, June 22, at the Pearl Concert Theater inside the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas. It will be the third straight year the NHL has feted the best hockey players in the world at The Palms Hotel in Las Vegas. The 2011 NHL Awards will be broadcast by VERSUS in the United States and CBC in Canada.
Tickets to the 2011 NHL Awards go on sale to the public today, Thursday, March 31, at Noon PT / 3 p.m. ET, via Ticketmaster.com at nhl.com/awardstickets and at the Pearl Concert Theater Box Office. Tickets include access to the 2011 NHL Awards show and the official NHL Awards Party, a cocktail reception to be held immediately following the show. Guests must be 21 or older to attend the NHL Awards Party.