NBA First Half Awards
With the season just over halfway done, let's look at the major awards. Feel free to disagree but it's James Hardens world right now and we're just living in it.
New York Islanders center Mathew Barzal won the Calder Trophy last season. It is the NHL's version of the Rookie of the Year Award. This trophy can only be won once. Vancouver's Canucks forward Brock Boeser and Arizona Coyotes forward Clayton Keller were also nominated for the award. Who could win the award this season?
The first player that comes to mind is Carolina Hurricanes forward Andrei Svechnikov. He was the second overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft and Svechnikov will make an impact right away at just 18 years old. He is a sniper and has all the tools to be one of the best goal scorers in the league. Andrei Svechnikov played with the Barrie Colts (OHL) last season. He scored 40 goals and recorded 32 assists, in 44 games last season. His plus/minus was 26. In eight-playoff games, Svechnikov scored five goals and recorded six assists. His plus/minus was -1.
The second player that comes to mind is Detroit Red Wings forward Filip Zadina. He was the sixth overall pick in the 2018 NHL Draft and Zadina should have been a top three pick. He is so talented and his skill is illustrious. Filip Zadina has the potential to be the next big star in Detroit since Pavel Datysuk and Henrik Zetterberg. Zadina is just 18 years old and he played for the Hailfax Mooseheads (QMJHL) last season. Filip Zadina played in 57 games and he scored 44 goals and recorded 38 assists. His plus/minus was 23. In nine-playoff games, Zadina scored five goals and recorded seven assists. His plus/minus was 2.
The third player that comes to mind is Buffalo Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin. He was the number one overall pick. Dahlin is just 18 years old. It isn't common for a defenseman to win this award. The last time a defenseman won it was in 2014-2015. Florida Panthers defenseman Aaron Ekblad won it that season. Rasmus Dahlin will make an impact on the blue line no doubt in his rookie season for Buffalo. It's just a matter of will he be able to be an impact right away or will it take some time? Dahlin played in 41 games last season for Frolunda HC (SHL) last season. He scored seven goals and recorded 13 assists. His plus/minus was 4. Rasmus Dahlin scored one goal and recorded two assists, in six-playoff games. His plus/minus was 3.
The fourth player that comes to mind is Anaheim Ducks forward Troy Terry. He was a fifth-round pick in the 2015 NHL Draft. Terry is just 20 years old and he has the ability to skate and shoot the puck. Troy Terry could provide a boost to an offense that lacks depth. He has the talent to be a top six forward one day and he played at the University of Denver (NCHC) last season. Terry scored 14 goals and recorded 38 assists. His plus/minus was 21.
The fifth player that comes to mind is New York Rangers center/forward Lias Andersson. He will most likely be the Rangers second line centerman this upcoming season. Andersson has good skating ability and is very good in the face-off circle. He has the potential to make an impact this season. Lias Andersson played in 22 games with Frolunda HC (SHL) last season. He scored seven goals and recorded seven assists. His plus/minus was six. In 25 games with the Hartford Wolf Pack (AHL), Andersson scored five goals and recorded nine assists. His plus/minus was even. He got his feet wet a little bit at the NHL level last season at just 19 years old. In seven games with the New York Rangers, Lias Andersson scored one goal and recorded one assist. His plus/minus was one.
The sixth player that comes to mind is Philadelphia Flyers forward Oskar Lindblom. He played in 23 games with the Flyers last season, but Lindblom is still considered a rookie because he has not played 25 games yet in his NHL career. Oskar Lindblom is ready to blossom in his second season with the Flyers. He can skate and he has the potential to be an offensive force. Lindblom was a fifth-round pick in the 2014 NHL Draft. He scored two goals and recorded four assists last season. His plus/minus was four. OsKar Lindblom played in four-playoff games in Philadelphia and he did not score or record an assist. His plus/minus was even. Lindblom played in 54 games with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms (AHL) last season and he scored 16 goals and recorded 18 assists. His plus/minus was four. In 11-playoff games, Oskar Lindblom scored four goals and recorded three assists. His plus/minus was two.