NHL Awards 2013-14: Who’s winning at the midpoint?

Sean Leahy

Every team has played at least 41 games as of Wednesday night. So it's about time we review the NHL's first half of the 2013-14 season and hand out some awards to those who are deserving.

We polled the Puck Daddy staff for their top five players for the Hart, Vezina, Calder, Norris, Jack Adams and Selke.

Please hand out some awards of your own in the comments.

(You can find Nick Cotsonika's awards column here.)

Greg Wyshynski, Puck Daddy Editor

Hart
1. Sidney Crosby
2. Ryan Getzlaf
3. Alex Ovechkin
4. Joe Thornton
5. Patrick Kane

I hesitate to put Crosby over since it’s really a two-man show in Pittsburgh (on two different lines, unlike in Anaheim), but you can’t deny the point total or the way Sid’s been able to keep the ship steady through injuries. But Getzlaf’s performance this season has been incredible.

Vezina
1. Tuukka Rask
2. Josh Harding
3. Ben Bishop
4. Carey Price
5. Ryan Miller

Rask is, at this moment, the best goalie in the world. I’ve seen more of Harding than Bishop, and he’s been dominant. I left Marc-Andre Fleury off my top five because I think his numbers are the benefit of Jacques Martin’s system in front of him than any revelatory performance on his part.

Calder
1. Tomas Hertl
2. Nathan MacKinnon
3. Chris Kreider
4. Torey Krug
5. Hampus Lindholm

Have to still give Hertl the nod here as the rookie that’s made the biggest impression, although I expect he’ll be overtaken by MacKinnon, Kreider or Nichushkin. Lindholm is your Jonas Brodin of 2014.

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. Ryan Suter
3. P.K. Subban
4. Alex Pietrangelo
5. Shea Weber

Keith’s arguably having his best season offensively and defensively for the Blackhawks. Suter’s nearly 30-minutes per night can’t be ignored. Weber’s probably the most underrated star this season in the NHL, playing really well on a struggling team.

Jack Adams
1. Patrick Roy
2. Jon Cooper
3. Michel Therrien
4. Bruce Boudreau
5. Joel Quenneville

Patrick Roy shocked the world with the Avs and then kept them in contention after that shock subsided. Cooper has led the Lightning through Stamkos’ injury. Therrien has done a remarkable job with the Habs as well.

Selke
1. Patrice Bergeron
2. Jonathan Toews
3. Pavel Datsyuk
4. Anze Kopitar
5. Marian Hossa

Bergeron remains the lynchpin up front for one of the best defensive teams in hockey, but I’d say he and Toews are neck and neck with Datsyuk for the Selke. Hossa’s been an outstanding defensive winger for years, but wingers win this award about as often as Ovechkin does.

***

Sean Leahy, Puck Daddy Associate Editor

Hart
1. Sidney Crosby
2. Jonathan Toews
3. Alex Ovechkin
4. Ryan Getzlaf
5. Ben Bishop

Somehow, as the Pittsburgh Penguins' lineup continually gets battered by injuries are the weeks go on, Crosby is able to keep himself out of the trainers' room. A healthy Sid is an MVP-candidate Sid. His 45 games as of today are the most he's played since the 2009-10 season, the last time he hit 100 points. With 65 points already, he's headed toward a fifth 100-plus point campaign.

Vezina
1. Ben Bishop
2. Tuukka Rask
3. Ryan Miller
4. Josh Harding
5. Carey Price

Martin St. Louis deserves plenty of love for what's he's been able to do in the absence of Steven Stamkos, but without the play of Bishop, the Tampa Bay Lightning wouldn't be third in the Eastern Conference, two points behind the Boston Bruins. He's tied for third among eligible netminders with a 1.86 goals against average, tied with Tuukka Rask for the NHL-lead in shutouts (4) and second in save percentage (.935). He's also sporting a .945 even-strength save percentage.

Calder
1. Tomas Hertl
2. Nathan MacKinnon
3. Torey Krug
4. Valeri Nichuskin
5. Hampus Lindholm

The winner of this mid-season award won't be the same as the one announced in Las Vegas in June. Hertl's injury will knock him out of contention, but there's no denying his 15 goals and 25 points in 35 games is an impressive start to his Sharks career.

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. Drew Doughty
3. Zdeno Chara
4. Ryan Suter
5. Alex Pietrangelo

It's a tough group to pick from because you could have several choices here and not be wrong at the midway point. In the end, it's Keith, who leads defensemen in scoring with 42 points and is just behind Doughty in possession among these five.

Jack Adams
1. Dan Bylsma
2. Bruce Boudreau
3. Ken Hitchcock
4. Jon Cooper
5. Patrick Roy

No team has lost more man games to injury than the Penguins (253). yet there they are fourth overall in the NHL and tops in the Eastern Conference with 65 points. While Pittsburgh might cruise to another division title and no. 1 conference seed, Cooper and Roy could threaten for the Adams should the Lightning and/or Avs remain in the playoff picture in their respective conferences.

Selke
1. Jonathan Toews
2. Patrice Bergeron
3. Alex Steen
4. Anze Kopitar
5. Henrik Zetterberg

Whether it's in the face-off circle, defensive zone, offensive zone, Toews is a master. He and Bergeron could trade off the Selke every other year and no one would complain.

***

Harrison Mooney, Puck Daddy Associate Editor

Hart
1. Sidney Crosby
2. Duncan Keith
3. Ryan Getzlaf
4. Alex Ovechkin
5. P.K. Subban

Is there anybody doing what Sidney Crosby is doing right now? The dude is unquestionably the best player in the world. He scores like crazy, he makes everyone around him better, and he terrifies defenders. Sometimes he's downright unstoppable. It's Sidney Crosby and then everybody else.

Vezina
1. Ben Bishop
2. Josh Harding
3. Tuukka Rask
4. Carey Price
5. Jonathan Bernier

People scoffed when Steve Yzerman opted to acquire Ben Bishop on the cheap rather than bidding on Roberto Luongo. But he looks pretty smart now. Bishop has been a huge -- and I do mean literally huge -- part of Tampa's resurgence, not to mention the way they've been able to tread water without Steven Stamkos. His even-strength save percentage is the best among starters, he leads the league in shutouts, he's second in wins and save percentage, and fourth in goals against average. He's killing it right now.

Calder
1. Valeri Nichushkin
2. Seth Jones
3. Aleksander Barkov
4. Nathan MacKinnon
5. Torey Krug

There was a time when it looked like Tomas Hertl was going to run away with this award, but now that he appears to be on the shelf for the remainder of the season, the race has opened up considerably. Right now, Nichushkin is my pick. He looks the least like a rookie out there, and his place alongside Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin has given the Stars one of the best lines in hockey.

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. P.K. Subban
3. Zdeno Chara
4. Matt Niskanen
5. Drew Doughty

Keith looks well on his way to his second Norris. He's got the point that get you noticed -- 42, tops among NHL defenceman -- and he's also chewing up minutes, shutting down opposition forwards, and driving the Blackhawks' league-best attack.

Jack Adams
1. Jon Cooper
2. Darryl Sutter
3. Joel Quenneville
4. Michel Therrien
5. Ken Hitchcock

The Jack Adams is usually about the coach who guides him team to an otherwise unexplainable performance, and this year, that guy is Cooper, who has turned the Lightning into a contender in the East. He's gotten help from some great goaltending, no doubt, but he's also done it without Steven Stamkos for a long stretch, and with a line-up full of kids.

Selke
1. Patrice Bergeron
2. Jonathan Toews
3. Justin Williams
4. Antoine Vermette
5. Mikko Koivu

Bergeron remains the best defensive forward in the game. Enough said.

Ryan Lambert, Puck Daddy Columnist

Hart
1. Sidney Crosby
2. Ryan Getzlaf
3. Alex Ovechkin
4. Jonathan Toews
5. Martin St. Louis

Seems a pretty simple argument to make. Crosby is the best player alive and the rest of the league is just playing at participating in the same sport as him. It's a whole other level. With that having been said, the rest of the field is perhaps going to be unfairly overlooked. What Ryan Getzlaf has done in Anaheim is nothing short of remarkable, Alex Ovechkin can't stop scoring, Toews is a three-zone marvel, etc. Martin St. Louis, meanwhile, makes the list because without him the Bolts would be dead in the water.

Vezina
1. Tuukka Rask
2. Ben Bishop
3. Josh Harding
4. Jonathan Bernier
5. Carey Price

Tuukka Rask is the best goaltender on the planet right now, and playing like it. Bishop is also playing at about the same level, but I'm not so easily convinced he can keep it up. Harding would probably be the guy if not for his games-played problem (understandable though it may be). Fill out the rest of the list as you see fit. Bernier and Price are as credible fourth- and fifth-place candidates as you'll find.

Calder
1. Tomas Hertl
2. Nathan MacKinnon
3. Torey Krug
4. Chris Kreider
5. Valeri Nichushkin

This isn't going to hold up, obviously, thanks to Hertl's injury, but man what a start. MacKinnon looks for real as well. Krug is benefiting largely from the judicious coaching of Claude Julien, who's not letting him anywhere near good competition. Kreider and Nichushkin both started making their pushes later than the rest of the field, and thus could be in much better shape by the end of the season.

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. Zdeno Chara
3. Drew Doughty
4. Alex Pietrangelo
5. P.K. Subban

Most of these guys are possession monsters, all of them face tough, tough, tough competition. Pick whoever you like from the first four and say he deserves the Norris and I'll say, "You got it, bud." I'm adding Subban as No. 5 even though he's well back of the pack simply because Montreal gets bossed around every game and he's one of just five(!) Habs with positive possession.

Jack Adams
1. Dan Bylsma
2. Ken Hitchcock
3. Bruce Boudreau
4. Joel Quenneville
5. Patrick Roy

Bylsma's team being anywhere near top of the league given what it's gone through is a miracle. Roy's team being anywhere near the middle of the league, let alone the top 10, is a slightly more minor one given the personnel. The rest of the guys just coach juggernauts, and therefore must be doing something very right.

Selke
1. Jonathan Toews
2. Patrice Bergeron
3. Anze Kopitar
4. Alex Steen
5. Henrik Zetterberg

Again, pick any of the top three and you'll be perfectly fine and justified in your choice. I was shocked to see Steen's numbers; he faces the toughest competition of anyone on the Blues, starts most of his shifts in the D-zone, and does nothing but push the puck forward and score. It's remarkable, but he's also hurt. Tough bounce. The inclusion of Zetterberg is deserved, and hopefully puts to rest the idea that Pavel Datsyuk is an elite defensive player. He's not even the best on his own team, and he starts more of his shifts in the attacking zone than every Red Wing but Jakub Kindl and Stephen Weiss.

***

Jen Neale, Puck Daddy writer

Hart
1. Ryan Getzlaf
2. Sidney Crosby
3. Alexander Ovechkin
4. Ben Bishop
5. Patrick Kane

Playing in southern California doesn't afford Getzlaf the attention he deserves. Sidney Crosby has more points and Alexander Ovechkin has more goals than Ryan Getzlaf. (Insert obvious hair joke here.) They also happen to play in the weaker conference and in the weakest division of the entire league. Sid and Ovi don't have to go against Los Angeles and San Jose multiple times in one season like Getzlaf does. Getzlaf, Ovi and Sid face the top lines of their opposition. Using the most basic stat of plus/minus, Getzlaf is a plus-17; where Sid is plus-11 and Ovi is minus-17.

Getzlaf is now doing what was expected of him five years ago when his career was in a downfall, he's is making the players around him better. Case and point, line-mate Dustin Penner. Penner has already surpassed his point totals of the past two seasons in fewer games played. Getzlaf was the one who went out on a line and convinced Bob Murray to bring Penner back.

Finally, when Bobby Ryan was shipped out, that was 30+ goals gone. His replacement, Jakob Silfverberg, has been injured a majority of the season leaving that goal-scoring gap wide open. Getzlaf, who has always been an assist-only guy, stepped up to make up the difference; Getzlaf has 20 goals after 41 games - his career high is 25 goals. Getzy's plus/minus would probably be higher if he didn't play on the Ducks below-average penalty kill (another area where Sid and Ovi don't play). [Ed. Note: Jen here. Brain fart, I know. I am so mad at myself. If I wasn't on Weight Watchers, I'd be eating my feelings ;)]

Vezina
1. Ben Bishop
2. Marc-Andre Fleury
3. Antti Niemi
4. Tuukka Rask
5. Josh Harding

In five seconds, name the Lightning's top four on defense. Not so easy, right? Ben Bishop doesn't have guys like Zdeno Chara, Ryan Suter, Kris Letang, Shea Weber, etc. in front of him. He also doesn't have the luxury right now of an offensive juggernaut like Steven Stamkos to pad his lead in games. He's managed to keep the Lightning competitive in games and near the top of the East. There are goalies with better save percentages and goals against but the key is winning. The Lightning are winning with Bishop in the net.

Calder
1. Tomas Hertl
2. Nathan MacKinnon
3. Tory Krug
4. Valeri Nichushkin
5. Hampus Lindholm

Since these are the mid-season awards, the Calder should be 1A and 1B because Hertl's injury will keep him out of the lineup for a while. Hertl should be applauded for reaching 25 points in 35 games as a rookie. The Sharks are missing those extra goals; even more so now with Logan Couture out of the line up for a few weeks.

My 1B winner is Nathan MacKinnon. He has passed Hertl in points and is about to tie him in goals. I look at Nate as having a bit of a chip on his shoulder. Everyone was obsessed with Seth Jones up to the draft. Everyone was sure Jones was going to go first. It ends up being MacKinnon. Then the comparisons to Sidney Crosby start because they're from the same town. Crosby is a once in a generation talent, that's just not fair.

MacKinnon's draft report lauds his skill but states he needs to bulk up before he can be productive at the NHL level. Instead of being sent down to get bigger, Patrick Roy decided to keep MacKinnon up with the Avs, making Nate one of the youngest players in the NHL at 18 years old; he won't turn 19 until September. He is contributing to a team that wasn't expected to do anything this year. In an 11 game stretch, he scored eight goals and two assists. He's currently tied with Ryan O'Reilly for fourth on the Avs in scoring.

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. Zdeno Chara
3. Ryan Suter
4. Shea Weber
5. Cam Fowler

I don't do fancy stats. They're too complicated for me. After P.K. Subban won the award last season, the Norris has officially become the offensive-defenseman award, not for being the complete package or for just good, solid defense. With that in mind, Duncan Keith is the best offensive-defenseman right now. He's the highest scoring d-man and 15th overall.

Jack Adams
1. Patrick Roy
2. Jon Cooper
3. Ken Hitchcock
4. Bruce Boudreau
5. Craig Berube

There were ZERO expectations for the Colorado Avalanche this year. New coach, young team, iffy goaltending. It was like they were automatically given a pass to be bad again. Well, everyone knows what happened to start the season; Patrick Roy went crazy-pants on Bruce Boudreau and a pane of glass. Some say this was a strategic move by Roy to reflect a new beginning in Colorado. (I think he's just got some anger management issues.)

Whatever effect the first game freakout had on the Avalanche, it worked.The Avs shocked everyone by going 15-5-0 in their first 20 games including destroying teams like Chicago and Anaheim. Roy got a group of kids - who were more interested in planning their Vegas vacations in the offseason last year - to buy in to what he's selling. He's had handle distractions off the ice with Semyon Varlamov but still managed to get great goaltending out of him and Jean-Sebastien Giguere through it all. The Avs are 26-12-4 through 42 games, seated in the final playoff spot in the central and separated by seven points from Minnesota.

Selke
1. Ryan Kesler
2. Patrice Bergeron
3. Jonathan Toews
4. Anze Kopitar
5. Pavel Datsyuk

As I said with the Norris, I don't do fancy stats. I go by what I see and read. The sexy pick is always going to Patrice Bergeron or Jonathan Toews. Totally understandable considering their team's standings within the league. I'm going out of left field here and pick Ryan Kesler.

Kesler won his only Selke in 2011. He hasn't been the same - until this season. For the first time, in a long time, Kesler is healthy. He's back to being the dick he was when he first won the trophy years ago. His face-off percentage is average (51%) but that's not all this award is based on. Of all forwards, he is second in total TOI only to Sidney Crosby. In the league, he's fifth in game winning goals (5), seventh in total shots taken (153) and ninth in power play goals (7). He's tied with Bergeron in takeaways with 29. Kesler has had a revolving door of wingers due to injuries. He's still managed to contribute without consistent linemates as Bergeron and Toews have.

Sam McCaig, Yahoo Sports NHL editor

Hart
1. Sidney Crosby
2. Ryan Getzlaf
3. Patrick Kane
4. Alex Ovechkin
5. Alexander Steen

Vezina
1. Ben Bishop
2. Carey Price
3. Tuukka Rask
4. Josh Harding
5. Antti Niemi

Calder
1. Nathan MacKinnon
2. Torey Krug
3. Tomas Hertl
4. Valeri Nichushkin
5. Alexsander Barkov

Norris
1. Duncan Keith
2. Alex Pietrangelo
3. Ryan Suter
4. P.K. Subban
5. Jay Bouwmeester

Jack Adams
1. Jon Cooper
2. Patrick Roy
3. Ken Hitchcock
4. Dan Bylsma
5. Bruce Boudreau

Selke
1. Jonathan Toews
2. Alex Steen
3. Patrice Bergeron
4. Marian Hossa
5. Henrik Zetterberg