Articles

Award Tracker – the Calder

In Hockey Hits on April 19, 2011 by geespotting

AWARD TRACKER

CALDER TROPHY (ROOKIE OF THE YEAR)

…Alright, so, the nominees came out this morning. This is one award where it was easy to predict. Here is a look at my winner, and the runner ups.

WINNER: Jeff Skinner, CAROLINA

…Some may argue this choice, but, I believe there really was NO other choice. He played for a non-playoff team, and had more points than any other rookie. As a matter of fact, of the top 4, he was the only TRUE rookie. In other words, all of his career games came this season. That can not be said of Couture, Ennis and Grabner. Not only did he lead all point-getters, but, he also did it being the youngest player in the league! Not bad for a guy who was actually going to be a figure skater instead of a hockey player. Mind you, those figure skating days have only benefitted his great game. We will watch his progression this Spring as Skinner plays for Canada at the World Hockey Championships.

RUNNER UP: Michael Grabner, N.Y.ISLANDERS

…Grabner finally found a home in Long Island after a stressful off season. The Canucks moved him to their burial ground known as Florida, and his tenure there was short-lived as he was placed on waivers and picked up by the Isles. All Grabner did was lead all rookies in goal scoring on a pretty bad hockey team. He was also electrifying at the All-Star game in winning the fastest skater contest. His wheels certainly helped him in becoming one of the great stories this past season.

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Logan Couture, SAN JOSE & Tyler Ennis, BUFFALO

…Both rookies were impressive, but, not good enough for my top 2 spots. Some say that Couture is the most complete rookie they have ever seen. His mind for the game is something to see at such a young age, but, his numbers were certainly magnified playing w/ the talent laden Sharks. As for Ennis, he is among a pretty good young crop of forwards in Buffalo that includes Nathan Gerbe and Drew Stafford. He played last year for a bit, and was of the Sabres’ best forwards in their first round loss to Boston last Spring.

– Coming up…a look at my picks for the GM’s Award!

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