Predicting how players will do each year is almost as fun as predicting how teams will do. Here is a quick rundown of who I got winning the big awards this season.
Presidents Trophy – Anaheim Ducks
The Ducks will take charge and dominate this season. The big, strong Ducks have been building this for years, and this team is poised to capitalize this season.
Hart Trophy (League MVP) – John Tavares, New York Islanders
Tavares has been one of the strongest players over the past five years. He is often forgotten out on the island. This year the Islanders will be a solid team, and with the move to Brooklyn the new exposure will make all realize the magnitude of Tavares to the Islanders.
Norris Trophy (Top Defenseman) – Drew Doughty, Los Angeles Kings
Doughty finally gets the award that he arguably deserved the past few years. He is offensively explosive and solid in the defensive zone. This will be the year.
Calder Trophy (Top Rookie) – Sam Bennett, Calgary Flames
Bennett only played one game in the regular season last year, but gained some very good experience during the Flames playoff run last season. Bennett proved that he was strong enough to play in the NHL, and I look for him to build on this playoff success in his rookie year.
Vezina Trophy (Top Goaltender) – Frederik Andersen, Anaheim Ducks
This is probably my most off the board pick. Andersen had a very good season last year, and he looks to prove that it was not a fluke. He is backstopping the best team in the NHL, and he will be in good position to rack up some solid stats. Many do not believe he will be able to push the Ducks to the Stanley Cup, but I think he is the key. He will rise to the top.
Jack Adams (Top Coach) – Mike Johnston, Pittsburgh Penguins
The second year Penguins coach from the Portland Winterhawks will finally rise to the upper echelon of NHL coaches. The Penguins will have a great year this year. Phil Kessel will add some key scoring, and if the Penguins get solid defense the sky is the limit.
Richard Trophy (Top Goals) – Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis Blues
He is flat out explosive. He can score —- just watch!
* Photo by Getty Images
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