Ducks forward Corey Perry takes home Hart Trophy as NHL’s most valuable player

2 Comments

When fans and media broke down the race for the Hart Trophy between Anaheim’s Corey Perry, Tampa Bay’s Martin St. Louis, and Vancouver’s Daniel Sedin the consensus seemed to be that it was a true toss-up as to who would come away on top. In the end, the PWHA had their say in the vote and it would be Corey Perry coming away as the NHL’s top player.

Perry’s 50 goal season and ability to lead the Ducks to the fourth seed in the Western Conference after such a rough start to their year and navigating an injury to linemate Ryan Getzlaf helped impress the voters to the point of earning 1,043 points and beating out second place finisher Daniel Sedin who had 960 points. Perry received 67 first place votes while Sedin took home 51 as the voters seemed to be torn between those two for the top spot. St. Louis finished with just one first place vote while finishing a distant third with 332 points.

For Perry, his breakout this season was a stunning one. The power forward’s ability to score and agitate was well known as it is, but scoring that many goals and helping carry his team into the playoffs was stunning and caught the league by surprise. His play helped inspire the team and while they ultimately bowed out early in the playoffs, getting the Ducks there in the first place was incredible. Perry, known more for his gruff on-ice demeanor, was soft spoken and surprised in accepting the award.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

Perry finished the night with two trophies as he also accepted his hardware for the Rocket Richard Trophy as well and he’s the first Anaheim Ducks player to win the league MVP.

For what it’s worth, the NHLPA disagreed with the PWHA on who they thought the league MVP was as Sedin won the Ted Lindsay Award as the MVP as voted on by the players. In an odd twist, Sedin’s twin brother Henrik won the Hart Trophy last season, but the Lindsay Award went to Alexander Ovechkin.

Perry reacts to winning the Hart Trophy
While he probably thought that he had a shot at winning the Hart Trophy, Perry was still a bit taken aback when he actually heard his name being called.

“You don’t know what to expect coming in and then all of a sudden you hear your name and you’re like ‘whoa.'” Perry said. “It surprised me and like I said, I have to give a lot of credit to my teammates.”

It was clear that Perry was emotional once he realized that he was named the MVP of the 2010-11 season. In fact, he seemed like he got a little bit teary-eyed once the reality set in. He wasn’t ashamed, either.

“Obviously I’m an emotional person and it’s like going back when we won the Stanley Cup. I cried after that. You know, it’s just personal.”

Red Wings sign Tomas Tatar: four years, $21.2M

Getty
Leave a comment

It turns out that Tomas Tatar‘s days are numbered with the Detroit Red Wings by almost 1,500.*

After a salary arbitration hearing and concerns that he might leave after a single season, “Band-Aid” sort of deal, a wide variety of reporters state that the two sides instead agreed to a four-year deal with a $5.3 million cap hit, which would total $21.2 million.

Those figures come from MLive.com’s Ansar Khan, the Detroit News’ Ted Kulfan, FanRag’s Craig Morgan, and Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman. The Red Wings confirmed that it was four years, but didn’t mention the financial details in their release.

Here’s the reported yearly breakdown (cue ominous music for that lockout-protection drop in 2020-21), via Morgan:

Again, this feels like a change in viewpoint, as even just yesterday it was reasonable to wonder if Tatar would only stick around for 2017-18. Now, it is possible that Tatar might get traded at some point, but a four-year deal is a bit surprising. The forward himself speculated that a one-year deal would be it.

This contract makes Tatar, 26, the Red Wings’ second-most expensive forward from a cap perspective, trailing only Henrik Zetteberg’s $6.083 million.

Even with this deal out of the way, Red Wings GM Ken Holland still has some work to do, including re-signing speedy forward Andreas Athanasiou. And the situation is tight.

* – Four times 365 is 1,460. Get it?

Wingels fractures foot, but should be ready for Blackhawks camp

Getty
Leave a comment

The good news is that Tommy Wingels is expected to be ready for Chicago Blackhawks training camp. The bad news is that he’ll be limited in his training regimen … although that very regimen caused him issues in the first place.

Dr. Michael Terry, the Blackhawks’ team doctor, released the following update regarding Wingels:

“Tommy Wingels sustained a left foot fracture during his off-season training. We anticipate a full recovery in six to eight weeks and in time for training camp. We do not anticipate any long-term issues.”

It’s unclear what caused the specific injury. Dropped weight? Unlucky fall? Perhaps a stress fracture? Without knowing the exact issue, it’s tempting to picture various painful scenarios.

(Probably because we’re in the dog days of the hockey summer, too.)

Wingels, 29, is on a one-year deal with Chicago, carrying a $750K salary and cap hit. He last played for the Ottawa Senators, though Blackhawks fans are most likely to remember him from his lengthy stay with the San Jose Sharks.

Six-to-eight weeks seems like it wouldn’t give a ton of room for error, so we’ll see if he’ll actually be ready for training camp.

Dahlin headlines Sweden’s roster for World Junior Summer Showcase

Leave a comment

Defenseman Rasmus Dahlin, potentially the NHL’s first overall draft pick in 2018, will suit up for Sweden at the World Junior Summer Showcase in Plymouth, Michigan.

Dahlin, who doesn’t turn 18 until April, has wowed scouts with his skating and puck-moving ability. At the 2017 World Juniors, he participated as a 16-year-old, garnering tantalizing reviews in the process.

Top-10 picks in the 2017 draft, Elias Pettersson (5th, Vancouver Canucks) and Lias Andersson (7th, New York Rangers), will also be in Plymouth representing Sweden.

Click here for Sweden’s and Finland’s Summer Showcase rosters. The tournament runs from July 29 – Aug. 5 and also features players from the United States and Canada.

Among the draft-eligible Finns to watch is 17-year-old forward Jesse Ylonen, who could be a late first-rounder in 2018.

Related: USA Hockey invites 42 players to World Junior Summer Showcase

All of a sudden, hope for hockey in Houston

Getty
17 Comments

Leslie Alexander’s decision to sell the NBA’s Rockets has revived hope for a hockey team in Houston.

That’s because Alexander is arguably the biggest reason that Houston doesn’t already have a team. The 72-year-old billionaire controls Toyota Center, where the Rockets play. Without getting into all the details, he’s essentially been the only one who could bring an NHL franchise to the city.

From the Houston Press:

But Alexander selling the Rockets (and the lease that goes with it), opens up an NHL-ready hockey arena in Houston. And that’s something that Seattle, which the NHL seemed to favor, can’t offer, and unlike Quebec City, Houston offers up a huge media market with many, many large corporations around to buy up luxury seats.

Houston is certainly a big city. In fact, only four metro areas in the United States — New York, L.A., Chicago and Dallas — have higher populations.

And Houston is growing fast.

Jeremy Jacobs, the influential owner of the Boston Bruins, has not hidden his desire to put an NHL team in Toyota Center. Back in 2015, he told ESPN.com, “I would love to see one in Houston, but we can’t get into that building.”

Perhaps soon the NHL won’t have that impediment.

FanRag’s Cat Silverman wrote extensively about this topic yesterday. To learn more, give it a read.