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2003-04-12

All-Rookie Team: (will be) Mathieu Garon, Barrett Jackman, Jay Bouwmeester, Rick Nash, Tyler Arnason, Henrik Zetterberg. (should be) Mathieu Garon, Barrett Jackman, Henrik Tallinder, Rick Nash, Ales Kotalik, Henrik Zetterberg.

Calder: Come on, everyone knows it's going to be Jackman. I mean, really, do you honestly think it's going to go to Henrik Zetterberg and his 22 goals?

Adams: The other unanimous decision. It always goes to the coach of an overachieving team. And in this case, the overachieving team just happens to be led by supercoach Jacques Lemaire.

Selke: Well, they're going to give it to Lehtinen, that much can be assured. As to who deserves to win the award, I'm still high on Todd Marchant and Wes Walz, though John Madden is an awfully good one too. Of course, is anybody sure that any of those players is even going to place higher than Mike Peca?

Norris: Lidstrom, MacInnis, Lidstrom, MacInnis. It says here that it should go to MacInnis, who did it for an entire season, but who really cares? At final count, they'll probably give it to the old man for career achievement.

Vezina: Another career achievement award. Yes, Brodeur had a great season (though not among his best) and should be in the top ten for the Hart, but Giguere has been both better than him and more valuable. Giguere is the clear deserving winner, but they'll give it to Brodeur. And, actually, that's fine by me 'cos at least they're not giving it to Turco for pulling off the easiest job in the NHL not currently occupied by Roman Cechmanek or Ed Belfour, who faded in the second half.

Hart: Based on the last day of the season, Naslund lost the award on the force of one dispirited game. So Forsberg it is, and I wouldn't argue. Give Thornton credit too, I mean, nobody's really sure whether Glen Murray finally blossomed as a 40 goal man or he's just leeching of Thornton, but we all know Mike Knuble hasn't turned a corner. Thornton is to the 2002-2003 Bruins as Pat LaFontaine was to the 89-90 Islanders. Me, I'd give it to Giguere, but Forsberg is a nice second choice.

First All-Star Team: (will be) Martin Brodeur, Al MacInnis, Nicklas Lidstrom, Markus Naslund, Peter Forsberg, and either Milan Hejduk or Todd Bertuzzi at right wing. (should be) J.S. Giguere, Al MacInnis, Nicklas Lidstrom, Markus Naslund, Peter Forsberg, Zigmund Palffy. Either way, three Swedes must be a record. If Lidstrom wins the Norris and, by some freak accident of Red Wings elitism, Zetterberg wins the Calder, Swedes could sweep the awards (except, that is, for the Vezina -- too bad Salo couldn't keep up the form he and Giguere showed that one week in late November and early December when both of them started pitching shutout after shutout). Still, the Hart, Art Ross, and perhaps Norris are all going to Swedes; somewhere in Stockholm, Hakan Loob is smiling. Maybe next year Salo can put it all together and either P.J. Axelsson, Magnus Arvedsson, or even Mats Lindgren can make a strong push for the Selke.

 

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