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Jonathan Toews wins Selke, underlines importance of the two-way trophy

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Jonathan Toews

Jonathan Toews won the 2013 Selke award, given to the season’s best two-way forward. (Todd Rosenberg/SI)

By Sarah Kwak

CHICAGO — The NHL announced just some of their award winners Friday afternoon, sort of second-tier accolades that included GM of the Year (Pittsburgh’s Ray Shero), coach of the year (Ottawa’s Paul MacLean) and the Lady Byng Trophy (Tampa Bay’s Martin St. Louis), given to the most gentlemanly player in the league. It seems that these are, perhaps, less important than the Hart, the Norris or the Vezina Trophy.

Now consider the Selke Trophy, which is supposed to be awarded to the best defensive forward in the game. But as it’s morphed into an award that acknowledges the best two-way forward, the Selke has become one of the most important awards in the NHL, one of the best indicators of the success of the recipient’s team.

Just look: this year’s winner is Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, now going after his second Stanley Cup in three years; and the 2013 runner-up? Boston’s Patrice Bergeron, going for his second Cup in two years. It may seem coincidental, but it’s not a fluke.

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  • Published On Jun 14, 2013
  • Awards races tight as season, playoffs

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    Few people get fired up about the Lady Byng Trophy for gentlemanly play and sportsmanship, however Panthers defenseman Brian Campbell will be a rare bird if he wins it. (Jamie Sabau/NHLI via Getty Images)

    By Stu Hackel

    The NHL hands out its annual individual player awards tonight in Las Vegas during a glitzy, star-spangled gala that’s a far cry from the afternoon luncheons in Montreal that were hosted by Clarence Campbell.

    Just as the regular season and playoffs were hard to predict as a result of the league’s parity, it’s difficult to try determining who the voters selected for some of the hardware, and there may be some controversial choices among fans who will believe that the wrong guy won. You have to keep in mind that the voting was done at the conclusion of the regular season and the award recognizes only that aspect of the players’ performances. The playoffs are not a factor.

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  • Published On Jun 20, 2012
  • Botta protest may affect NHL awards

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    Rookie Michael Grabner is a solid Calder Trophy candidate, but he will likely lose votes if local chapters of the Pro Hockey Writers Association boycotts the NHL awards. (Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images)

    By Stu Hackel

    A number of hockey writers took the opportunity this weekend to speculate about who might win the NHL’s major individual awards, many of which, including the Hart, Calder, Selke, Norris and Lady Byng, are selected by a vote of the Professional Hockey Writers Association. But three PHWA  chapters –in New York, Long Island and New Jersey – are apparently not casting ballots this year to protest the Islanders revoking the credential of Chris Botta, a PHWA member and former Islanders public relations director who was occasionally critical of the club in his Islanderspointblank blog.

    This means that at least 20 of the 177 eligible members of the PHWA won’t be casting their ballots.
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  • Published On Apr 04, 2011


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