Handicapping the NHL hardware
I'm starting to think that the NHL might have a bit of a security breach.
Just days after that whole
We'll have to wait a bit to see if those hats ever hit the market, but the Ovechkin shirts should be online for good shortly after the NHL's awards are presented Thursday night in Toronto. He's the safest bet among a slate of fairly predictable winners.
If you can't stand the drama, or embarrassment of seeing your favorite NHLers stumble through a teleprompter reading, here's a look at who we expect to see walk away with the hardware.
Along the way to racking up these ridiculous numbers, Ovechkin forged a reputation as the most dynamic player the game has seen since
The passing of time has had no obvious effect on the play of the 38-year-old Swede, who'll walk away with his sixth Norris in seven seasons and it looks like only lack of desire can keep him from topping
But Kane gets the nod by virtue of his consistency. The first-overall pick last summer stepped right into the lineup at 19 and led all rookies and the Hawks in scoring with 72 points in 82 games, keying a remarkable turnaround season for the franchise. He also scored seven goals on nine shootout attempts, including three game-deciding goals.
All three finalists are worthy, with Babcock being the most deserving for the magnificent leadership that steered the Wings to another Cup. But this one will be won not just on merit but sentiment, and Boudreau earns high marks in both categories. The journeyman player/coach who guided the young Caps from worst to first in the Southeast is the year's best story, and that's a hook that the broadcasters who vote for this award simply can't ignore.
And now, no offense to the honored finalists, on to the lesser awards: