Hockey fans around the league learned that the members of the New York chapters of the Professional Hockey Writers Association (PHWA) decided to forgo their privilege to vote for the annual NHL Awards this season. The reason is because the New York members of the PHWA are unhappy with the Islanders decision to not issue credentials to a blogger.
This past week, the PHWA ballots were distributed for the writers to cast their votes on the Hart Trophy, Norris Trophy, Calder Trophy, Lady Byng Trophy, Selke Trophy and All-Star teams.
This unprecedented action taken by the New York chapter members of the PHWA, is not hurting the Islanders organization or changing our stance on the past matter. Instead it is directly affecting the various players that rely on these votes to earn nominations. Players such as Michael Grabner
, who is considered as one of the frontrunners for the Rookie of the Year award, or Frans Nielsen
who is considered a possible nominee for the Selke Trophy, will not receive votes from New York media members who watch these players every game.
Grabner will never have a 30-plus-goal rookie season again. In the case of Nielsen, his seven shorthanded goals this year are the most since Philadelphia Flyers forward Mike Richards, who also scored seven tallies in 2008-09, when he was nominated for the Selke Trophy.
It is unfair to punish the players that had no direct impact on the decision made by the Islanders organization. The Islanders request that the New York members of the PHWA change their position and vote for those NHL players who deserve consideration for an NHL award. By doing so, the New York members of the PHWA will recognize the players that rightfully deserve the chance to have their name considered among the league’s elite.