The Sporting News named Vancouver Canucks center Henrik Sedin its NHL Player of the Year. According to the story, Sedin received 108 first-place votes, besting Alex Ovechkin’s 86 and Sidney Crosby’s 72.
Judging from Craig Custance’s write-up on Sedin victory, it seems that Henrik’s success without his twin brother Daniel (18 points on 10 goals and 8 assists in 18 games) made a big impact on the voting. The Sporting News apparently asked 363 coaches, players and executives to decide who was the year’s best.
“When I was out, he really wanted to show himself and all the people, too, that he could play without me,” Daniel says. “When I came back, he kept playing the same way. That’s probably what brought him to the next level.”
As you probably know, none of the three finalists remain in the playoffs. Sedin and Crosby were booted in the second round while Ovechkin fell in the first.
That shouldn’t take away from Henrik’s amazing season in which he earned the Art Ross Trophy with 112 points, blowing away his previous career highs. The question is: will Hart Trophy voters make the same decision this summer?
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.