The Chicago Blackhawks currently have a 92.8 percent chance of winning the President’s Trophy, and we’re in the beginning of March. Such is life when you’re 19-0-3, and off to the best start in NHL history.
Does that mean Joel Quenneville has the Jack Adams locked up? No, actually it doesn’t. There are other coaches in the NHL that it could be argued are doing more with less; and as Mike Babcock can tell you, winning Coach of the Year with a team that’s expected to do well isn’t easy.
Coming up, the Jack race and the other trophies in our weekly awards watch.
A note on the voting: All four panelists ranked the top five for each award, and point values were assigned to each player. Ties were broken by how high a player was ranked on the majority of ballots.
1. Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins (23)
2. Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks (22)
3. Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning (13)
4. Thomas Vanek, Buffalo Sabres (5)
5. John Tavares, New York Islanders (4)
Crosby over Kane again, but the margin has closed to one vote after the Blackhawks winger’s heroics over the weekend. Pekka Rinne drops out of the top five, while Thomas Vanek slides back in for a Sabres team that’s three points off the playoff pace – just like Tavares and the Islanders.
1. Kris Letang, Pittsburgh Penguins (21)
2. Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Phoenix Coyotes (17)
3. Kevin Shattenkirk, St. Louis Blues (13)
4. Alex Pietrangelo, St. Louis Blues (9)
5. Andrei Markov, Montreal Canadiens (5)
Niklas Kronwall of the Detroit Red Wings and Francois Beauchemin of the Anaheim Ducks were close. Letang spends a second week atop the Norris leaderboard, with Ekman-Larsson nearly doubling his support in placing second. The big news: Shattenkirk has passed his Blues teammate Pietrangelo for the first time.
Viktor Fasth falls out of the top five after one week, despite being 9-1-1 on the season for the Ducks. Anderson remains atop the Vezina ranking even though he’s been sidelined with an injury.
1. Jonathan Huberdeau, Florida Panthers (24)
2. Cory Conacher, Tampa Bay Lightning (15)
3. Brendan Gallagher, Montreal Canadiens (14)
3. Justin Schultz, Edmonton Oilers (11)
5. Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis Blues (4)
All hail Jonathan Huberdeau, who takes over the top spot from Conacher. Watch this race develop: If Huberdeau leads the league in rookie goals, this award might be his just because he isn’t playing with the kind of offensive talent that Conacher is. Tarasenko’s injury has all but torpedoed his candidacy.
Jack Adams Award
1. Joel Quenneville, Chicago Blackhawks (23)
2. Michel Therrien, Montreal Canadiens (18)
3. Bruce Boudreau, Anaheim Ducks (14)
4. Paul MacLean, Ottawa Senators (12)
5. Claude Julien, Boston Bruins (4)
While he wasn’t unanimous, Coach Q remains atop the Jack Adams rankings because, in case you haven’t noticed, the Blackhawks haven’t lost in regulation yet. Therrien’s conference-leading Habs trump Boudreau’s surprising Ducks.
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