Here are my picks for some of the major awards from the 2009-10 NHL season. Each of the awards has three finalists selected by the NHL. The actual winners will be announced over the summer in Las Vegas.
Norris Trophy- Top Defenseman
Duncan Keith (Chicago Blackhawks)- Keith edges out other finalists Drew Doughty (LAK), and Mike Green (WAS) because of his strong defensive play all season for Chicago. While Doughty and Green both had more points, Keith blocked way more shots, and his play in his own end was downright inspired. Keith also gets the nod because he played more minutes than any other defenseman in the NHL--meaning he was especially key to the power-play and shorthanded units--and he appeared in all 82 games for Chicago.
Calder Trophy- Rookie of the Year
Jimmy Howard (Detroit Red Wings)- Howard wins this award because he made such a huge impact on the Wings this season. The netminder from the University of Maine won 37 games for Detroit and put up a solid 2.26 GAA and a .924 save percentage. Howard knocks off competitors Tyler Myers (BUF) and Matt Duchene (COL) because without him, the Wings probably wouldn't be headed for the second round of the postseason.
Vezina Trophy- Top Goaltender
Ryan Miller (Buffalo Sabres)- Even though the Olympics don't count towards these awards, Miller's play during the world-wide tournament cements his status as the best goalie in the world. The Sabres' netminder wins the Vezina because his GAA (2.22) and save percentage (.929) are better than the other finalists, Martin Brodeur (NJD) and Ilya Bryzgalov (PHX). And Miller faced more shots than either of them.
Jack Adams Award- Coach of the Year
Dave Tippett (Phoenix Coyotes)- Tippett wins the Adams award as the League's Coach of the Year because of the remarkable job he did with the Coyotes in 2010. Tippett led Phoenix to the 4 seed in the Western Conference despite their rough financial situation. While Joe Sacco (COL) and Barry Trotz (NSH) both did magnificent jobs, I think Tippett should get the nod.