The NHL Awards Show is tonight (5 p.m. mountain) and one of the trophies that will be given is the Norris, for best all-around defenseman in the NHL season. It will be either Cale Makar or Roman Josi, and it’s going to be a close call I think.
While I think Cale Makar will win it, based on a little unscientific polling of fellow media brethren who do the voting, I believe it will be darn close. Makar had more goals, though, which I think will matter. He was only the third defenseman since 2000 to score 28 goals.
His plus-minus (+48) was by far better than Josi. The voting was done at the end of the regular season. It does not include any playoff play. But Josi had a very strong last month of the season, and he might be the beneficiary of some recency bias there. Some media think, because Josi didn’t play on as good a team that maybe he deserves it more – while Makar had lots of top guys to pass the puck. I guess Filip Forsberg and Matt Duchene (40+ goals each) are just chopped liver.
Hey, Josi had a great season, no doubt about it. If he wins, that’s the way it goes. But I think we all know who the best defenseman in the league is right now.
The Hart Trophy will also be given out tonight, and I’m sure it’ll be either Auston Matthews or Connor McDavid. The Vezina Trophy also will be handed out, and Igor Shesterkin should win that. The Calder? Detroit’s Moritz Seider is the favorite.
Here is a debate on YouTube between some Toronto hockey guys that I thought made some good points: