Alex Ovechkin snagged the night’s two most impressive awards at this year’s incarnation of the NHL Awards in Las Vegas. Winning the Hart Trophy and the Lester B. Pearson Award, Ovie was the star of what was a very glitzy and glamorous evening.
Even Ovechkin’s arrival screamed Vegas glitz, arriving on the red carpet with a showgirl on each arm and boasting to have won $500 playing blackjack. He also won yet another Rocket Richard Trophy for leading the league with 56 goals, but noted that he’d trade away all of his hardware for a Stanley Cup.
In terms of the voting, Ovie was a runaway winner for the Hart Trophy. He finished with 115 of 133 first place votes, beating Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin and Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk in the first all-Russian group of Hart finalists.
As the first of three awards shows planned for Las Vegas, the NHL really rolled it out with a glamorous show that featured Chaka Khan and Robin Thicke among other celebrity guests.
The Boston Bruins joined Ovechkin as award-winning regulars, with Zdeno Chara winning the Norris Trophy, Claude Julien winning the Jack Adams Award, and Tim Thomas snagging the Vezina for a stellar season. His emotional acceptance speech was one of the night’s most touching highlights. “I never really allowed myself to believe that I might win,” said Thomas.
Detroit’s Datsyuk didn’t go home empty-handed either, winning the Selke and Lady Byng trophies for the second straight year.
The Calder Trophy for rookie of the year went to Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Steve Mason, while Steve Sullivan of the Nashville Predators won the Masterton Trophy for perseverance and dedication. Roberto Luongo was voted fan favourite and Jarome Iginla won the Messier Leadership Award.
Posted by Jordan Richardson.