Ryan Getzlaf wasn’t surprised to learn that neither he nor Chicago captain Jonathan Toews were named finalists for this year’s Hart Trophy.
Not surprised at all.
“We were pretty well aware it was going to be all East this year,” Getzlaf told ESPN’s Craig Custance. “That’s just the way it is.”
Getzlaf led the Ducks with 49 points in 44 games this season — pacing Anaheim to the third-best overall record in the league — while Toews was Chicago’s second-leading scorer (48 points in 47 games) while captaining the club to its first Presidents’ Trophy in over 20 years.
Yet when the voting results were made public, neither Getzlaf nor Toews was a finalist.
Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and John Tavares were announced on Friday as the three nominees — and Getzlaf has a theory on how that came to be.
“The only time the media in the East sees anyone in the West is when we play them,” he explained. “You’re not going to see our games, the media, staying up to 1 or 2 in the morning to watch.”
The Hart Trophy is one of five awards voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, along with the Selke,
Vezina Norris, Calder and Lady Byng.
This year, according to Custance, 46.4 percent of voters were from Eastern Conference cities, 32.8 percent were from Western Conference cities and 20.8 percent were from an international chapter that doesn’t cover specific teams.
Custance also noted that a record 178 PHWA members voted this year.
Former NHL defenseman Mike Commodore may have been coached by Mike Babcock, but that doesn’t mean he’s a fan of Mike Babcock.
Commodore played in just 17 games for the Detroit Red Wings during the 2011-12 season and that was enough for him to muster up some pretty harsh feelings toward his old coach.
As Babcock’s new team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, were being spanked in Detroit on Friday, Commodore took to Twitter to show fans just how much he was enjoying his former coach’s struggles.
Things got especially interesting after Red Wings rookie Dylan Larkin scored just 20 seconds into the second period to give Detroit a 3-0 lead.
“3-0 nothin Babs you posing arrogant piece of (bleep),” said Commodore via his Twitter page. “Welcome back to the rink where everyone that met you hates you.”
Commodore wasn’t done there:
And there was much, much more.
To get a look at all of Commodore’s Babcock-bashing tweets, click here.
Late in the third period of Friday’s game against the New York Rangers, things were looking good for Columbus.
Brandon Saad, who the team acquired from Chicago this off-season, scored his first goal of the season to give his team a 2-1 lead with under four minutes remaining in the contest.
Unfortunately for the Jackets, that’s as good as it would get.
The Rangers responded with three unanswered goals from Oscar Lindberg, Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello to spoil Columbus’ home opener.
“When something like that happens at the end, I think we’re gonna be a better team because of it,” defenseman Ryan Murray told reporters after the game. “It’s a harsh lesson, but it’s a good one.
Luckily for Columbus, they won’t have to wait very long to try and get their revenge.
The Blue Jackets and Rangers will finish off their home-and-home series at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night, which might not be such a bad thing for Columbus.
“It’s good that we get another chance tomorrow,” Saad said after Friday’s game. “We were high on emotions (after the go-ahead goal) and they scored and it took the wind out of our sails, but we have to keep playing. We have to learn to keep doing our thing, regardless of the score.”