The PHWA mid-season awards were voted on by 150 writers and over 2000 fans. That fan vote likely helped make these results look a little closer to the players that deserve these awards as opposed to the players that will get nominated for the NHL Awards — because as fans of Pacific Division hockey, we’re all too aware that the final nominations will always go to familiar faces.
A few takeaways here: Why is anyone pretending Drew Doughty is still an award-worthy defenseman in any aspect of his game? Did anyone predict these Calder nominees in the preseason? I honestly can’t argue with the Lady Byng, Vezina, Jack Adams, GM of the Year, or Comeback Player, but I know in my heart that the league is stupid and will somehow screw these up come the NHL Awards.
The Sharks have had a rough season, where if it’s not one disaster, it’s another. Do they have anyone who really deserves a nomination here? The closest would maybe be Brent Burns, who is second in scoring for defensemen, despite having an quiet year that leans heavier on assists than in previous years. “Defensemen who best excels at the defensive aspects of the game,” should have Marc Edouard Vlasic’s name on it every year.
It’s frustrating that Pacific hockey is routinely underrepresented in these things and the old standards to fall back on are always the same: Connor McDavid, Drew Doughty, Anze Kopitar, Johnny Gaudreau. Brock Boeser is an exception this year, and a well deserved one. But they’re so few and far between.
Maybe this Sharks roster this year doesn’t have too many All-Stars. But even if they did, would the NHL notice?
San Jose, Sharks awarded 2019 NHL All-Star Game
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman officially announced Saturday in Tampa, Florida, where this year’s All-Star Game is being held, that San Jose and the Sharks will host next year’s weekend-long event, with the skills competition on Jan. 26 and the game itself on Jan. 27, both at SAP Center.
Mike Harrington’s NHL Power Rankings – The Buffalo News
10. San Jose Sharks. Hit break second in Pacific, where not many people thought they'd be. (previously 15)
NHL All-Stars share the stage with Tampa’s pirate parade | tbo.com
As for the players themselves, they weren't sure what to make of the sight of thousands of people dressed as pirates hours before their Skills Competition at Amalie Arena. "I thought they were just dressed up and trying to be like me," joked San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns, known as much for his long beard as his booming slaphot.
IN THE WAKE OF THE WEEK: Brady’s back once again; Kings drop to bottom of standings | TheUnion.com
San Jose Sharks television commentator Jamie Baker is back behind the mic after a short absence. Class act. Great guy. Scored the biggest goal in Sharks history. Part of the team heritage and back in the seat!
Sharks unlikely to make big trade to fill hole at center - San Francisco Chronicle
What’s hard for fans, and probably teammates, too, is figuring out how the Sharks can continue to be successful without their alternate captain.
NHL All-Star Game: Pacific Division's skills shine through
Brent Burns was entered in the hardest shot competition Saturday but didn't get the result he was looking for
And around the league:
NHL commissioner Bettman on goalie interference, international hockey, Seattle - Sportsnet.ca
The NHL is asking its officials to loosen up their interpretation of goaltender interference when using video review.
NHL All-Stars would prefer to be Olympians
Instead of preparing for an Olympic tournament that had the potential to eclipse the five previous competitions that involved NHL stars, the league’s top players are in Tampa this weekend for All-Star festivities.
NHL All-Star Game: A long way from PyeongChang, player lament missing Olympics - The Washington Post
Many of the game’s stars say they would rather be getting ready for South Korea Games than making the rounds in Tampa.
Talented young Americans making their mark in NHL
Young players share spotlight with hockey's biggest names at NHL All-Star game
NHL should retool lottery, give worst teams better odds to draft high
Right now, a team could finish 17th - and get the No. 1 pick in the NHL draft. I'd like to see a fairer system that still does not reward tanking
NHL to debut ‘NHL 18’ esports league by the end of the regular season - SBNation.com
EA Sports and the NHL are jumping into the esports business.
NHL All-Star Game 2018: Good, bad from skills competition
Alex Ovechkin saved the day in the hardest shot competition, but there was much more to see (and not see -- or hear).
Ranking every 2018 NHL All-Star from least to most deserving - SBNation.com
From Brian Boyle to Connor McDavid, here’s everyone partying in Tampa.