The debate over who the NHL MVP is for 2009-10 has paused since the playoffs got underway, but we're getting closer to restarting the debate as the Stanley Cup playoffs end in a few weeks. Right about now is the time of year when websites and publications offer up their version of NHL awards, further fueling the discussion that will come to a head on June 23 in Las Vegas.
Kicking off awards season, Sporting News polled 363 NHL players, coaches and executives for their trophy winners. As far as league MVP, that honor was bestowed to Vancouver Canucks center Henrik Sedin(notes), who garnered 108 first-place votes. Finishing second with 86 first-place votes was Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin(notes), while Pittsburgh Pengquins center Sidney Crosby(notes) placed third with 72.
The same trio is up for the Hart Trophy and the newly renamed Ted Lindsay Award, formerly the Pearson Award, given to the NHL MVP as voted on by the players. Should Sedin capture the Lindsay, he'll become the first Western Conference player to do so since former teammate Markus Naslund(notes) won the award in 2003.
We don't know the breakdown of voting in terms of how many of Sedin's 108 votes were from players, coaches or executives, but the Sporting News POY award has predicted the Hart Trophy winner eight out of the past 10 years and the Pearson/Lindsay winner nine out of the last 10 seasons. Will the Professional Hockey Writers Association feel the same?