It’s always fun to predict awards at the beginning of the season and see how horrifically wrong you were, so let’s do just that right now.
Jim Gregory (GM of the year): Pierre Dorion
After years of just being not good, Pierre Dorion finally took the Senators to the next stage this offseason, adding TWO top-six forwards in Alex Debrincat and Claude Giroux, and not losing a single roster player in return.
Assuming Ottawa can at least make the playoffs, I think he’s got this award locked up, but he definitely has to have the team make it to the postseason to do so.
Jack Adams (Coach of the year): Jay Woodcroft
I think Woodcroft would’ve been a candidate for this last season, had he been the coach for the full season.
He’s a great coach, has completely turned the Oilers around since coming in and has given the team a new light. I think he has a real chance of winning this.
The question is, will he get the Mike Sullivan treatment? Sullivan was a coach who deserved this award a few times, and has always been snubbed because of the team he had. Will we see the same with Woodcroft because he has McDavid and Draisaitl?
Selke Trophy: Anze Kopitar
With Los Angeles back on the rise, I’m expecting them to get a lot of attention this season, and in doing so, many people will realize that Anze Kopitar is still a top defensive forward in the league.
This is always a hard award to predict because you really won’t know until the season is underway. For all we know, Bergeron could win AGAIN.
But, I’m expecting Kopitar to embrace his defensive-first role this season as LA tries to contend.
Calder Trophy: Mason McTavish
This year’s Calder race is going to be fun to watch, such a good rookie class.
I could easily see Matty Beniers up here as well, but I went for McTavish. He’s absolutely tearing it up at the WJC right now and is evidently NHL ready. Plus, the youth wave over in Orange County will add to the hype.
I’m expecting big things from McTavish this year.
Vezina Trophy: Igor Shesterkin
I’ve got Igor Shesterkin doing that in the Vezina Trophy race. He just had a historical season, and I don’t expect him to slow down as the Rangers continue onto contending for the Stanley Cup.
There will be some other guys up here, it’ll be much closer than it was this year, but I still think he’s taking it.
Norris Trophy: Cale Makar
Cale Makar is just 23 and already cementing himself as one of the best defensemen to ever play the game of hockey, and he’ll add to his legacy this season with another Norris trophy.
Colorado’s offense is just insane, they’re going to be another top-tier team in the NHL, and he’ll be a big part of that while being a minute-muncher. Expecting another point-per-game season from Makar.
Ted Lindsay: Connor McDavid
If you search up “most outstanding player,” the definition will probably be Connor McDavid.
He is consistently the most outstanding player in the NHL, and why would that stop now? He’ll probably lead the league in points, Edmonton will be a top-tier team, and he’ll have some insane highlights again.
I’d bet big on this one.
Maurice Richard: Auston Matthews
Either Matthews or Ovechkin for this one, maybe Draisaitl as well. In the end, I went with Matthews because of the talent around him along with the fact that he is the best goal scorer in the NHL right now.
Hart Trophy: Connor McDavid
There’s a lot of guys you could put here, but I’m going with McDavid.
As I said, an insane season (per usual), is coming his way that’ll get a lot of eyes on him. He’s the best player in the league and it isn’t close, and there’s no doubting his value to the Edmonton Oilers.