Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Hockey Fanatic Awards 2016

The Confessions of a Hockey Fanatic invented it's own Awards system on the hopes that it could be seen as an alternative to the NHL Awards since they always seem to get things wrong. The NHL Awards Show were on tonight with comedian Will Arnett as the host this time around. It was certainly yet another safe choice for the NHL productions as they tried to stay far away from negative social media critics and bloggers.

Note: Despite the NHL not regarding playoff performances in their awards, the COHF blog does.

Most Valuable Rookie: Connor McDavid

You have to give it to the kid even after he busts up his shoulder. He lost close to half the season and still finished in the top of the rookie class in scoring. Great for him and great for the future of the Edmonton Oilers franchise.

Most Valuable Player: Alex Ovechkin

While a certain winger for the BlackHawks was DQ'd for this honor, I instead chose the one guy who hauled his team through the regular season to earn them another President Trophy honor. 

Most Valuable Coach: Mike Sullivan

Who else but Coach Sullivan who came in at a critical time to the Penguins franchise and sold to them a new focus and plan to turn around a mess of a season.

Most Valuable Defenseman: Erik Karlsson

He's the captain of a Senators team that doesn't have much to work with in a situation that's got them on the bubble of being a playoff team or a lottery drafting team. Karlsson is your prototypical blueliner that out-scores the rest of the field.

Most Valuable Goalie: Martin Jones

To come out of backup obscurity to lead his team into the Cup finals should make everyone take notice of him now.

It almost went to Carey Price for the sheer notion that his team sunk faster than the Titanic once he was injured for the year. Just goes to show you how much he was missed and needed.

Most Valuable NHL Slovak player: Tomas Tatar

He was the leading "point-getter" and goal scorer in the NHL last season leading his team to yet another consecutive playoff appearance. His teammate Jurco was 8th out of 10.

Most Valuable Teammate Tandem/Trio :  Haglund, Bonino Kessel

Okay, I'm making an excuse to go with the extra player in the "tandem" category because much like my hockey area have been all caught up in the HBK line. It produced more fan interest and made fans out of the most unlikeliest of sources. Pittsburghers and media groups were quick to make a celebrity out of the Punjabi broadcaster with the "Bonino" goal calls. So, the cultural impact and the growth of the game is credited to these three people.

Most Valuable General Manager: Jim Rutherford

Even though the Pens were having a rough first part of the year, Mr. Rutherford was able to make a few more tweaks and hire a coach to turn things around in a really dramatic fashion. 

Most Valuable Ice Girls: Philadelphia Flyers

Not only are all Ice Girls valuable and provide an honorable service to both the fan base and the team as ambassadors of the sport, but the Flyers group really stand up proud.

Most Valuable Fanbase: St. Louis Blues

I think a team that had the cleverest gimmick all year was appealing to the Canadian fan base trying to get their support throughout the playoffs. Maybe it worked, there are no records or polls of how many fans they gained. But I think a fan base that was willing to work that hard to grow their numbers to cities further away from the "gateway to the west".
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