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Victor Hedman named finalist for Norris

The Lightning blueliner was named a finalist for the second straight season

by Bryan Burns /

No Lightning defenseman has ever won the Norris Trophy, given annually to the National Hockey League's top blueliner.

But Victor Hedman will make his bid when the 2018 NHL Awards are presented June 20 in Las Vegas.

He's got a one-in-three shot anyway.

Thursday, Hedman was named one of three finalists for the Norris, joining Los Angeles' Drew Doughty and Nashville's P.K. Subban. Hedman is a Norris finalist for the second-consecutive season and finished third in the 2017 vote behind the winner, San Jose's Brent Burns, and Ottawa's Erik Karlsson.

The Norris trophy was first awarded at the conclusion of the 1953-54 NHL season. The winner is selected in a poll of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association at the end of the regular season.

Hedman will be joined at the 2018 NHL Awards by Lightning teammate Andrei Vasilevskiy, who was named a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, given to the league's best goaltender, on Tuesday,

Hedman set a career high during the 2017-18 regular season for goals with 17, tied with Philadelphia's Ivan Provorov and Calgary's Dougie Hamilton for most in the NHL by a defenseman. Hedman's 25:51 average time on ice ranked fifth in the NHL and was a career high. He also led the Bolts and set a new personal mark for most hits (139) in a season.

The 27-year-old Swede finished fifth in the NHL for defenseman scoring and power-play scoring. Hedman's 63 points were tied for the third most in a single season by a Lightning blueliner.

Hedman became Tampa Bay's all-time leading defenseman goal scorer after netting No. 73 of his career February 8 versus Vancouver. He already owned Lightning records for most defenseman points and assists coming into this season.

He was named to the NHL All-Star Game for the second year in a row.

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