Calder Trophy finalists

Columbus’ Steve Mason, the Ducks’ Bobby Ryan and Chicago’s Kris Versteeg have been named as the three finalists for the Calder Trophy. The Kings’ Drew Doughty was not among the top three vote-getters.

I voted Mason first, followed by Doughty. Ryan and Versteeg were also in my top five, but I thought Mason and Doughty were particularly outstanding, compared to fellow rookies at their respective positions. The award will be given out on June 18 in Las Vegas.

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  • David

    Norris > Calder

    Your time is coming, Drew.

  • TeamHasHoles


  • Meg

    UGH!!!! This is a serious injustice for Drew. He was awesome all season, and gets no recognition for it since the team didn’t make the playoffs. I have no argument with Mason, and I agree Ryan probably deserved to be a contender although it gets under my skin personally since he plays for the Quackers. The other thing that bugs me about Ryan is that he had a full AHL season prior to this year, whereas Drew went straight into the NHL. How many rookies do that? On defense? Hardly any. That alone should have put Doughty in the top 3.

    Thanks for your vote Rich. Just ashame more of the hockey writers didn’t see it your way.

  • nykingfan

    wow…not even named as a finalist?
    I would have said it was an east coast bias…but all of the players play in the Western conference.

    I had a feeling that this award was going to come down to stats. What a shame…they don’t know what they missed.
    This is the problem with writers voting on awards…whatever the sport may be.
    Rich, this has nothing to do with you…I think you’re one of…if not the most knowledgeable hockey writer out there.
    I read the NY papers and can’t believe how ignorant some of the hockey journalists are.
    These same people will be writing great things about the Kings and Doughty when we win and he becomes Norris trophy winner….then I’ll just laugh.

  • CanadianKing

    Wow, I’m shocked Pekka Rinne was left off the list. I’m guessing it’s because the Preds missed the playoffs but man, that guy carried that team.

  • Irish Pat

    You know, the emotional Kings fan inside me can’t help but shout boo, but honestly, there were a ton of great rookies this season and I’m not really that surprised. I was more bummed at the end of Anze Kopitar’s rookie season as I felt he got shafted whether it had to do with East Coast bias or whatever. What I am excited about is we have Drew Doughty on our team. Calder trophy candidate or not I imagine every team in this league would trade their rookie or rookies for Drew Doughty except for the Jackets. I’d much rather have a potential perrenial Norris trophy candidate on my team than Kris Versteeg any day. Actually, I’d rather have Drew Doughty on my team than about 98% of the players in this league. Long live Drew Doughty as an LA King!!!

  • sense13

    Very nicely said Irish Pat!

    Rich, I’m frankly surprised that you had voted for DD at 2. DD just doesn’t have the stats to support him. He may be the best rookie but his stats say otherwise.

    Calder is all about the stats people.

  • Big A

    Disappointing, but not surprising. Really, the same thing happened to Kopi in arguably a weaker overall rookie class.

    Anyone that watches hockey can see DD’s skill on both ends of the ice though. Maybe a few dozen more PIMs and he’d have gotten Barret Jackman-type respect from voters, lol.

  • wisconsinKingsfan

    I was disappointed but not surprised. All three of those finalists are proper candidates, although I would have liked to see a defenceman thrown in the mix. All that really matters is that Doughty will some day (soon) bring the Stanley Cup to LA.

  • sense13

    Jackman also led his team in plus/minus in his rookie season which I believe was the deciding stat. It appears as though it was a weak year for the rookies when Jackman won it.

  • variable

    i echo the same sentiments of everybody here…

    big picture:

    drew will win a norris within 4 years…

  • jet

    Stats rule when half the voters only see the player a coupld of times. We know what we have.
    I agree with the Rinne comment. He should have been mentioned.

  • mrbrett7

    Tough year as there were so many worthy.

    Can’t really claim East Coast Bias as Columbus (Ohio) and Chicago (Illinois) are in the Western Conference, but all basically play in the East for most of the season where the bulk of the voters can see them.

    There were quite a few rookies this year who deserved it.

    We know what we have in DD…

  • Bring Back the Shield Jersey

    Drew lost any chance to be seriously considered for the Calder when he got thrown down against Montreal. Penalty? Maybe, but none called. Doughty ended up looking weak on a decisive play when many Canadian and East Coast writers’ eyes were looking upon him in person for the first time as a pro.

    In order to win future trophy/ies, Drew will have to do something to get that image out of the writers’ minds. He needs to make a huge, big time play at either Montreal (preferably), Toronto, or Ottawa.

  • historyguy

    I definitely agree with the consensus here: 1. Mason, 2. Doughty, 3. Ryan.

    That said, perhaps there’s a potential silver lining. Maybe Drew will be a little bit less expensive and easier to resign when he hits RFA. I know, it’s a ways off yet, but…

  • dirtmover

    No drew is somewhat a drag as a 18-19 yr old rookie D man is a serious adjustment and to play the minutes he did should have warranted more consideration- Mason and Ryan are solid – but the headscratcher is Versteeg I watched alot of hawk games this yr,dude is a stiff – Come on playing with toews and sharp and kane i could bag 20 goals – I dont think the guy has found his way past the redline yet this yr-

  • 28 KINGS

    Bring Back the Shield Jersey… you really can’t be serious on your analysis? One play does not sway someones view, especially THAT play, which has been called a penalty everytime someone does it except in MTL. That’s like saying when Mason got lit up 4-1 in Calgary, and was pulled after the 2nd, because he looked shakey, that the voters started to second guess their votes.

  • 28 KINGS
  • Derek Bargaehr

    I’m frankly surprised that Versteeg made it above Doughty. I’m sure it’s because Doughty didn’t make as much an obvious statistical impression on his team. Sure, 21 points is okay, for a D-guy. But it was his defensive-mindedness that really stood out.

    I can see where the finalist standings are coming from (stats, partially at least), but Doughty really, in my humble opinion, more important to his team than Versteeg.

    Plus, have you seen Ryan and Versteeg’s portraits? Versteeg looks straight out of German business school, and Ryan’s creepy white features….*shiver* Doughty’s got that jolly charming face.

  • jet

    Great stuff 28 Kings, thank you

  • Bring Back the Shield Jersey

    Yeah, Jet, I’m serious. It was my first thought when the play happened. We see DD play excellent hockey all the time; we all love Drew.

    But if the writers do take a broader view, see him game in game out, and are not overly influenced by one play (certainly a possiblity), then why isn’t he a finalist? In a way, you’re contradicting yourself.

    What Drew did this year was special; in a nutshell he played composed, veteran-like hockey as an 18-19 year old. That’s incredibly difficult and rare. Certainly rarer and more difficult than a rookie forward putting up lots of numbers; THAT happens every year.

    I’m just positing that Drew made a bad impression in that Montreal game, and it cost him. It didn’t help that he was quite shaky against Toronto too. And, yes, first impressions do matter. That’s why there’s a saying that, “First impressions last a lifetime.”

    If Drew is as good as we think he is, and being a great rookie defender is more difficult than being a great rookie forward, then why isn’t he a finalist? Is it all about the numbers? For an equitable comparison, Doughty has better numbers than Jackman did, 6-21-27 vs 3-16-19. Jackman won, Doughty not even a sniff. At least I’m giving a reason, which I think is quite plausible, as to why this is the case.

  • deadcatbounce

    Feel bad that Drew wasn’t recognized for his stellar play, but more important is that he’ll hopefully be one of the integral cogs in the Kings winning the Stanley Cup. Then, all the writers and fans can look ban and ask the question, “how did this guy not even get nominated for the Calder?”

  • 28 KINGS

    Jackman wasn’t competing with a goalie who took his team to the playoffs for the first time and had 10 shutouts. And common man, it’s always about the points. Offensive forwards are always in the top 2 or 3 every year. Doughty would have had to put up an extra 10-20 points to get voted in if were talking purely on points, even though he lead all rookie d-men in points. Voters always look at numbers, not getting hauled down on one play, or having a so-so game against the Leafs. Your logic is reaching at best.
    If we go by numbers:
    G-Mason with the most win
    F-Ryan most points
    D-Doughty most points, most assist,most TOI by any rookie.

    I never expected him to win it,but he certainly IMO should have been top 3.

  • Telos

    Doughty didn’t belong there. Should have been Mason, Ryan, and Rinne. Doughty didn’t have the stats. He will just have to try for the Norris trophy.

  • wisconsinKingsfan

    Wow great video 28 Kings. Thanks for reminding me what a stud Drew Doughty is.