June 21, 2014 at 2:35 pm

Ted Kulfan

Sidney Crosby should be MVP, plus other NHL award picks

Sidney Crosby led the NHL with 104 points, including 68 assists. (Jamie Sabau / Getty Images)

Detroit ó The NHL Awards Show is Tuesday, and it promises plenty of fodder for radio talk shows the following day.

You can count on some presenter to totally butcher Martin St. Louisí name (or more likely, Ondrej Palat). The background music is gosh awful. There will be plenty of fake smiles and laughter.

Being that itís in Las Vegas, itís pure schmaltzy Las Vegas.

Hopefully it wonít take away from the actual awards, because there were some outstanding individual performances this season.

Hereís one personís opinion on how the results should go Tuesday night.

Cue the orchestra.

Hart Trophy (MVP)

Finalists: Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh; Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim; Claude Giroux, Philadelphia

I voted Crosby one, Getzlaf two and Giroux three on my ballot, so I nailed this one in terms of the finalists.

Getzlaf and Corey Perry drove the Anaheim machine all season, and Getzlafís accountability and leadership likely will bring one more Stanley Cup to Anaheim in the future.

Giroux was a major reason the Flyers turned around their season.

But Crosby had the best individual season of anyone. He had points in 60 of 80 games, led the NHL with 104 points, and spurred the Penguins to an outstanding regular season despite a league-high man-games lost to injuries by the Penguins.

Pick: Crosby

Norris Trophy (defenseman)

Finalists: Zdeno Chara, Boston; Duncan Keith, Chicago; Shea Weber, Nashville

One of these seasons, Weber will win the Norris Trophy, and Iím banking on this being the season. The Predatorsí star has been runner-up twice and, frankly, this will not be an easy field to beat Tuesday.

Keith had a plus-22 rating and has seemingly taken his level of play upward each of the past few seasons. And Chara, simply put, remains a tower of power of strength for the Bruins.

But Weber is gradually evolving into the premier all-around defenseman in the game, capable of beating you in a variety of ways.

Pick: Weber

Selke Trophy (defensive forward)

Finalists: Patrice Bergeron, Boston; Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles; Jonathan Toews, Chicago

One thing about this category, and the Norris, in particular: The talent pool and quality of players to choose from seem to get bigger and wider each season. Itís difficult to comprehend, sometimes, the amount of outstanding defensemen and two-way forwards in the league currently.

In this category, really, how can you choose between Bergeron, Kopitar and Toews?

I will say this: If it were to include the playoff season, I would have voted for Kopitar. He was outstanding in shutting down Toews, Getzlaf and Joe Thornton (San Jose) in the three Western Conference playoff series, then dominating the Rangers in the Stanley Cup Finals.

But this being an award based on the regular season, Iíll go with Toews, who was dominant on a nightly basis for the Blackhawks.

Pick: Toews

Vezina Trophy (goalie)

Finalists: Ben Bishop, Tampa Bay; Tuukka Rask, Boston; Semyon Varlamov, Colorado

All three goaltenders carried their respective teams, but statistically, Rask had a bit of an edge over the other two.

Rask led the league with seven shutouts, ranked second with a .930 save percentage, fourth with a 2.04 goals-against average, and was fifth with 36 victories.

Varlamov led the league with 41 victories, but didnít rank in the top 10 in goals-against. Bishop ranked seventh in both GAA and SVS.

On a stout Bruins team, it was difficult to get a puck past Rask, as the Red Wings found out in the postseason.

Pick: Rask

Calder Trophy (rookie)

Finalists: Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay; Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado; Ondrej Palat, Tampa Bay

Johnson and Palat had great seasons for the Lightning, and both appear to have bright futures ahead of them.

But MacKinnon lived up to being the No. 1 pick in the draft, leading all rookies with 63 points, 39 assists and eight power play goals.

And though it doesnít count for award purposes, MacKinnon made a dazzling impression in the playoffs for Colorado.

Pick: MacKinnon

Lady Byng Trophy (sportsmanship)

Finalists: Patrick Marleau, San Jose; Ryan OíReilly, Colorado; Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay

Itís tough to pick against OíReilly, who averaged 19 minutes 49 seconds of ice time, had a big offensive seasons (28 goals, 36 assists), had a nearly even rating (finished minus-1) and yet was whistled for only one penalty (two minutes) all season.

Thatís a difficult thing to do.

Pick: OíReilly

Jack Adams Award (coach)

Finalists: Mike Babcock, Detroit; Jon Cooper, Tampa Bay; Patrick Roy, Colorado

Babcock arguably did one of his best coaching jobs stitching the injury-ravaged Red Wings together into the playoffs. Cooper, a Lansing native, took a largely inexperienced Lightning team further than most thought theyíd go.

But Roy deserves this award by lifting the Avalanche to a Central Division championship (over powerhouses St. Louis and Chicago) with a team that some predicted (including this reporter) was going to be a last-place team.

Pick: Roy



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