Los Angeles Kings named 2015 Sports Team of the Year

Jared Clinton
Los Angeles Kings celebrating their 2014 Stanley Cup championship. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

They’re not playing for the Stanley Cup this season, but the Los Angeles Kings have been named the 2015 Sports Team of the Year at the eighth annual Sports Business Awards.

The Kings, who won their second Stanley Cup in the past three seasons in 2014, won the Sports Team of the Year award for the first time in franchise history and beat out the MLS’ Los Angeles Galaxy, NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, MLB’s St. Louis Cardinals, NFL’s Seattle Seahawks and IndyCar and NASCAR’s Team Penske. Read more

Why Barry Trotz deserves at least a Stanley Cup final appearance

Jared Clinton
Barry Trotz (Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images)

It seems amiss to say someone in the world of sports deserves anything. After all, if it were all about who deserves it the most, would we even play the games? But the thing is, after a while, there are players, coaches and general mangers who we root for and think, “Well, it sure would be nice to see them win something.”

Picture Ray Bourque. Or Lanny McDonald. Or even Marian Hossa. They were all players who, year after year, were denied the sports’ top prize. Bourque won his Stanley Cup in the final year of his career. The same goes for McDonald. And it took Hossa three straight Cup finals with three different teams to finally get handed the trophy.

Now picture Barry Trotz, the coach who did something with nothing more often than arguably any other coach in the history of the league, yet the one who has nothing save a World Championship gold medal to his name. There’s a man who deserves at least the chance to have his team play for a Stanley Cup. Read more

NHL announces Jack Adams Award finalists: Flames’ Bob Hartley, Rangers’ Alain Vigneault, & Preds’ Peter Laviolette

Alain Vigneault

The NHL announced Wednesday the finalists for this year’s Jack Adams Award as the league’s top coach: Calgary’s Bob Hartley, Nashville’s Peter Laviolette, and the Rangers’ Alain Vigneault.

The Jack Adams Award, presented since 1974 to the head coach deemed to have “contributed the most to his team’s success,” is voted on by members of the NHL Broadcasters’ Association. There are worthy candidates beyond the three finalists this year, but there’s no arguing the finalists aren’t as worthy of the honor as anyone else. Read more

This year’s Ted Lindsay Award finalists: Canadiens’ Price, Capitals’ Ovechkin & Stars’ Benn

Jamie Benn (Richard Wolowicz/Getty Images)

The NHL Players’ Association revealed Tuesday the three finalists for this year’s Ted Lindsay Award recognizing the league’s most outstanding player as voted by fellow NHLPA members: Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price, Dallas Stars winger Jamie Benn and Washington Capitals winger Alex Ovechkin. Read more

Jets’ Ladd, Ducks’ Getzlaf, Hawks’ Toews this year’s finalists for Mark Messier Leadership Award

Andrew Ladd (Lance Thomson/NHLI via Getty Images)

Winnipeg Jets winger Andrew Ladd, Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf and Chicago Blackhawks superstar Jonathan Toews are the finalists for this season’s Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award, the league announced Monday.

All three finalists are captains for their respective teams, and one of the three will win their first Messier Leadership Award, which since the 2006-07 campaign recognizes one individual “who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice during the regular season”. Read more

Brent Burns, Mark Giordano, Henrik Lundqvist named NHL Foundation Award finalists

Brent Burns San Jose Sharks

The ultimate act of benevolence is to do something good for someone else with little attention or fanfare for yourself. Fitting, then, that the NHL Foundation Award is among the league’s lesser-known annual honors. It’s awarded to the NHL player  ”who applies the core values of (ice) hockey – commitment, perseverance and teamwork – to enrich the lives of people in his community.”

Like with the Masterton Trophy, each team nominated one of its players. A judging panel then voted, producing three top vote getters as finalists. The finalists are:

Read more

Top 5 Conn Smythe performances in honor of the trophy’s 50th year

Jared Clinton
Jonathan Quick is handed the Conn Smythe Trophy by Gary Bettman. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

It was 50 years ago today that Jean Beliveau, the Montreal Canadiens legend, was named the first ever recipient of the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Beliveau paced Montreal with eight goals and 16 points in 1964-65, as the Canadiens went on to win the Stanley Cup in seven games over the Chicago Blackhawks. At the time, it was one of the best playoff performances and it would take five years before a player, the legendary Bobby Orr (9 goals, 20 points), won the trophy with a better offensive performance.

Since Beliveau’s win a half-century ago, however, there have been many players who have carved out a small piece of history for themselves with remarkable post-season performances that helped them capture of Conn Smythe honors. These are the five best: Read more

Bill Masterton Trophy finalists: Wild’s Devan Dubnyk, Penguins’ Kris Letang and Senators’ Andrew Hammond

Kris Letang (Gregory Shamus/NHLI via Getty Images)

The NHL announced Thursday the three finalists for this season’s Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, awarded to the player best exemplifying “the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey”: Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang, Minnesota Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk, and Ottawa Senators netminder Andrew Hammond. Read more