Globe and Mail:Eric Dhhatschek reports on the NHL award voting works and that the writers have received their ballots early.
The writers vote for the Hart, Norris, Selke, Lady Byng and Calder. The broadcasters vote for the Jack Adams and NHL GMs get to vote for the Vezina, which goes annually to the goalkeeper "adjudged to be the best at his position."
I'm going to keep it Easter Conference centric and also exclude awards like the President's Trophy or something decided by leader in a stat like the Maurice Richard Trophy. I'm also excluding Lester Patrick, King Clancy because that's just as much for off-ice things that is just impossible to know.
Calder Trophy/Rookie of the Year:
Jonathan Towes will win this one but for Eastern Conference purposes Nicklas Backstrom is my pick.
Frank J. Selke Trophy/Top Defensive Forward in the NHL:
No idea unless somehow a high scoring player like Heatley or Crosby get nominated, shut down forwards are hard to notice unless it's on your team and usually it's not about numbers. Even Viktor Kozlov has a great plus minus but is not a great defensive player. Writing names like Rod Brindamour or John Madden for this year would simply be a guess on my part and not a good one.
Hart/NHL Most Valuable Player:
Talking Eastern Conference to me it's Malkin over Ovechkin because he carried his team without Crosby to first place while Washington is in a scramble for the eighth seed. I do not expect the voting to favor Malkin because these things do come down to a popularity contest and Malkin is not a big time interview.
Jack Adams Award/Coach of the Year:
He's not going to win but playoffs or not how Claude Jullien took a team predicted fifteenth with those injuries to the final days merits him being selected and is my pick for the Jack Adams. My guess is Guy Carboneau wins because Montreal was another club predicted to be terrible in many circles and it is a popularity contest. How does Mike Terrien not get consideration for all the injuries his club had and still winning it's division? How can you not also write down Brent Sutter's name or Bruce Boudreau in Washington?
James Norris Memorial Trophy/Top Defenseman in the NHL.
Lindstrom will win as usual but for me this one goes to Zdeno Chara for being a rock on the backline in Boston, not about big numbers for me this time.
Vezina Trophy/Top Goalie in the NHL:
To me it's Martin Brodeur's award to lose out of the Eastern Conference with Nabakov in San Jose and yes Chris Osgood for an outstanding year in Detroit. To me Rick DiPietro deserves mild consideration because he kept the league's lowest scoring club in contention and played well right through his final game against Montreal as does Ty Conklin and Tim Thomas for playing great hockey for months and holding their teams in contention. Or course DiPietro will never be a media favorite among the New York media as Brodeur will never win a popularity contest despite both going out of their way for the press.
That loud noise from the Western Conference was Roberto Luongo's Vancouver Canucks not making the playoffs, my guess is that will cost him with the other general managers.
Funny thing with these votes is no one tells us how many each teams writers or broadcasters receive? Do the Islanders get a NY Post vote or a Peter Botte vote from the Daily News or does Larry Brooks and John Dellapina take three votes for all three local teams and make it all centric for his own team? Does the Times get an Islander vote without a beatwriter?
If a club has more beatwriters/announcers like in Toronto do they have a built-in advantage here? Does Butch Goring, Chris King and Steve Mears get votes? Do people with a business interest for themselves like ESPN's Scott Burnside get a vote here as they pick markets with an ESPN-zone to help promote their work? Do the TSN personalities get a vote like Mike Milbury?
No one breaks down who is officially entitled to a vote here at all, it seems were kept in the dark on purpose.