With the NHL season about a third of the way through, there has been enough hockey played to start predicting awards. That’s not to say that the predictions are locked in, there is still plenty of hockey to be played. This past week we asked fans who they thought will win some of the big awards, and the Arizona Coyotes were represented.
Darcy Kuemper deserves to be a bit higher in the ranking. A panel of NHL.com writers recently had him win the Vezina and he currently leads the league with a .936 save percentage. He doesn’t have the name recognition among fans, which likely contributed to him not getting as many votes in a general fan poll.
That’s not to say he is a lock this season. Connor Hellebuyck, Tuukka Rask, and Jordan Binnington all have more wins then Kuemper, with comparable save percentages. Marc-Andre Fleury doesn’t have the wins, nor the save percentage, but with the Vegas Golden Knights playing much better as of late his numbers may go up.
Jack Adams Award
For the second year in a row Rick Tocchet is also getting some Jack Adams hype, and he seems poised to lead the Coyotes to their first playoff appearance since the 2011-12 season. If the Coyotes had made the playoffs last season Tocchet may have won the Jack Adams, so with the team currently second in the Pacific Division it makes sense that he would get some love in this poll.
It’s tough to argue with the coaches that finished above the Coyotes though. Previous Jack Adams Award winner and former-Coyotes coach Dave Tippett has turned around the Edmonton Oilers, who have gone from the second-worst team in the Pacific Division to leading it.
Barry Trotz’s success with the New York Islanders also can’t be overlooked, especially with them currently on pace to get second in their division again. The Islanders’ success is less surprising considering how they finished last season, but they are still playing well and Barry Trotz is key to that.
The Coyotes weren’t represented in the other major awards, which isn’t too surprising. But what do you think? Do you see the team winning any major individual awards this season? Feel free to comment below.