Dallas Stars Daily Links: Jamie Benn Recognized by NHL Players for Being Amazing
It's almost like the players realize how hard it is to do what Jamie Benn does or something. Weird. Also, Prusty got busted, and Seattle got another option for an NHL arena site, maybe?
John Tavares is one of the best hockey players on the planet. The nephew to one of the most amazing lacrosse players of the last fifty years has been outstanding from his time as an "exceptional" OHL player onward, and he is the biggest reason for the Islanders' return to relevance over the past few years. He is quite a remarkable player, and hey, I'm already boring myself talking about him, because here is the thing: he was nominated for the Hart Trophy, but the players did not nominate him for the Ted Lindsay Award. The Teddy L Special, as I call it, is for the most outstanding player as voted by the players. It's kind of like the Kid's Choice Awards, wait, no it's not.
Anyway, here's the whole reason Tavares's name on the Hart ballot was replaced by Benn's on the Lindsay top spots:
This is an interesting award, because its voted on by #theplayers and not #thewriters like the Hart Trophy. Some look at this as the true, legit best player, since the voting populous is at ice level and not press box level.
And included is Benn, who was not a finalist for the Hart. Guess players in the league don’t put as much stock in the whole ‘team makes the playoff’ thing like we do. In that case, Drew Doughty for Norris! Both Ovechkin and Price are Hart Trophy finalists.
Still, Benn is a solid selection as part of the trio simply because, he led the NHL in scoring, which perceives excellence of course. And he’s also one of the five best players in the NHL.
Yep, there you go. The writers--the majority of whom are based in the east and, surprise, do not watch all the games in the NHL because nobody does--chose Tavares, and it's pretty obvious that they decided on him because he was the best player (behind Ovechkin and Price) whose team made the playoffs. The players seem to have remedied this oversight by the writers, and even though Benn probably won't win the Ted Lindsay award anyway, this really does highlight the whole dumb problem with the #narrative about these awards (that don't even mean anything, really).
Tavares's team made the playoffs, and that means he is somehow "more valuable" to his team, because obviously the Stars and the Islanders are carbon copies except for their captains, and so bim-bam-boom, Tavares>Benn in the value category, fill out those ballots, and hey, let's give another pad-clad goalie some awards for making the game less exciting for everyone (yeah, it's their job; I get it). NHL fixed, time to go eat fast food and chortle with our other writer buddies about the 1970's Habs.
Not trying to be sour grapes here really, because again, it's awesome that Benn was nominated by the players. But how do all the writers, who are supposed to have a bit more of a bird's-eye view on things, get outsmarted by the players when it comes to assessing league performance? Jamie Benn scored more points in the Central Division whilst beset with a hip injury (that I still don't quite understand when Erin explains it) than any other player in hockey. Granted, Ovechkin's goals are the more impressive feat--he'd be my vote for Hart/Lindsay any day--but I just have to shake my head when I read the confusion out there about how Benn of the not-playoffs could possibly ever be more valuable than a virtually equivalent player in an easier division with a better goalie. Anyway, good on Benn, and good for the players. The only real bad news about the captain's being nominated is that word is clearly out: Jamie Benn is one of the very best most elite no foolin' he's absolutely insanely awesome players in the world. There's my objective viewpoint from the [new] media.
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How long until NHL teams seriously start utilizing goalies like soccer teams do for back passes? Seems like it's only a matter of time, although I do remember seeing Turco get one or two of those during the power play back in the day.
What does it say that the players voted for Benn over Tavares for the Ted Lindsay award? It says that the media narrative was behind Tavares for the Hart because his team had a goalie who was not-bad enough to get them into the playoffs. [Pro Hockey Talk]
The Texas Stars will look different next season, given the contract status of many of their players. HDH has a good overview. [100 Degree Hockey]
It's probably time to start counting out Devan Dubnyk after the Hawks took a 3-0 series lead on a 1-0 shutout last night. Good try, good effort, Minny. Did I mention that you chose to ruin your Stadium Series game next year by taking the Hawks instead of the Stars? [NHL]
The Flames scored a last-minute goal (literally) to force overtime, and YOU WON'T BELIEVE WHAT HAPPENED NEXT. /buzzfeed [NHL]
Brandon Prust is super sorry for blowing his top about Brad Watson's being a tool the other night. Prusty will have the privilege of donating $5,000 to what I believe is the player's emergency assistance fund. [SportsNet]
The Rangers' Wikipedia page was pretty amazingly modified. I love this whole "no Caps" thing, and it just keeps getting better. Grammar and sports finally meeting again back on the other side. /contented sigh (tip o' the Caps to KP for pointing this one out to me.) [Washington Post]
"The prosecution calls Gary "Gary" Bettman to the stand for the big honkin' concussion lawsuit, your honor." [TSN]
Speaking of that series, Derek the Writer has a good look at the netminding duel going on back east. [THW]
Seattle goin' get itself a hockey team somewhere. Not sure exactly "where" that will "be," but hey, NHL! [Puget Sound Business Journal]
Here is a survival guide for being down 0-2 in a playoff series. This won't help Calgary. [Down Goes Brown]
Would you like to watch the Ducks lose in overtime? All righty then, here you go: