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06-23-2006, 05:23 AM
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Leaf Lander
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With CP files) - Traded by the Boston Bruins earlier in the season, Joe Thornton responded by winning the Hart Trophy as the NHL's Most Valuable player with the San Jose Sharks.

Thornton won the award over Calgary goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff and New York Rangers forward Jaromir Jagr.

Thornton also captured the Art Ross Trophy as the NHLís leading scorer with a career-high 125 points (29 goals, 96 assists). He tallied 20 goals and 72 assists in 58 games with San Jose following the November 30 trade from Boston.

"I went into a situation and got a chance to play with some really good players," said Thornton. "I never really changed my game. I'm just playing with some different players, that's all."

Related Info
NHL Awards Notebook
Ovechkin named to first all-star team
Top 10: TSN NHL Awards
Thornton wins Hart
1-on-1 with Thornton
TSN's NHL Awards
McGuire's 2005-06 Monsters
It was the fifth time in the last six seasons that a Canadian won the Hart, which is voted on by members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.





Thornton's points total was 1,058. Jagr got 974 Hart points and Kiprusoff was third with 561. Eric Staal of the Carolina Hurricanes was fourth with 121.

"I was a big hockey fan so I would always watch these awards," said Thornton, remarking on the star quality of many of the names on the beautiful Hart. "Just to be mentioned with and to rub elbows with those names is a huge compliment.

"Just to see Wayne (Gretzky) here is a big thrill for myself."

If he had any hard feelings towards the Bruins for trading him, they've been set aside.

"I'm just in a new place playing the same game I always played," he said. "I wish the Bruins all the best."

Kiprusoff still won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goaltender in addition to claiming his first William Jennings Trophy as the goaltender on the club allowing the fewest goals on the season.

Kiprusoff led all goaltenders in goals-against average (2.03) and shutouts (10), ranked second in victories (42), third in save percentage (.923).

Kiprusoff did not attend the gala. He's in Finland so GM-coach Darryl Sutter accepted the trophy on his behalf. Sutter joked that Kiprusoff would like to thank the Flames coaching staff.

Kiprusoff won the Vezina over rookie Henrik Lundqvist and veteran Martin Broduer.

Jagr did not go home empty handed. He won the Lester B. Pearson Award as the "NHL's most outstanding player" as voted by fellow members of the National Hockey League Players' Association.

"With this award, you get voted on by players you play against every night and I think they understand the game better than the media," Jagr said with a laugh.

It was the third Pearson win for Jagr, who also won in 1999 and 2000.

Jagr's 123 points marked the third-highest output of his career, and his 24 power-play goals were a career-best.

Jagr beat out Washington Captials rookie Alexander Ovechkin and Thornton for the honour.

Ovechkin capped a phenomenal freshman season by winning the Calder Memorial Trophy as the NHL rookie of the year. He beat out perhaps the toughest class in history, topping Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby and Calgary's Dion Phaneuf.

"I never felt any pressure," Ovechkin said of his amazing first year. "I just enjoyed playing in the NHL, I enjoyed my life. It was my dream being in the best league in the world."

Ovechkin wished Crosby and Phaneuf best of luck in the future and delivered some of his thank yous in Russian.

Just getting nominated was tough enough, with many tremendous rookies pushing for the honour in 2005-2006.

Ovechkin led all rookies in scoring with 106 points (52 goals, 54 assists), became the second rookie in history to tally 50 goals and 100 points in a season (Winnipeg's Teemu Selanne, 1992-93).

He also led the NHL in shots (425), ranked third in points, and tied for third in goals.

Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings won his fourth James Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenceman.

Lidstrom has been nominated seven times in the last eight seasons, winning four of the last five times.

He led all defencemen in scoring with a career-high 80 points (16 goals, 64 assists) in 80 games. Lidstronm ranked third in the NHL in ice time per game (28:06), and posted a +21 rating.

Scott Niedermayer of the Anaheim Ducks and Sergei Zubov of the Dallas Stars were also nominated for the Norris.

Lidstrom's contract with Detroit is up.

"We'll see what happens," he said. "I'd like to stay in Detroit.

"I've been there 15 years. If we can work things out, I'd like to stay there. We'll have a meeting while I'm out here and, hopefully, we can get something done."

Rod Brond'Amour, fresh off his Stanley Cup victory with the carolina hurricanes, won the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the league's top defensive forward. He led all forwards in ice time per game (24:17), led all players in face-offs taken (2,145), and ranked third in face-off winning percentage (59.1%).

"For this award, you have to be on a good team to get nominated," Brind'Amour said. "You look at guys who have won it in the past, there was nobody that finished last that got that award."

He edged Ottawa's Mike Fisher and three-time winner Jere Lehtinen for the honour.

Lindy Ruff was on the Jack Adams Award as coach of the year. He led the Sabres to a 52-24-6 record for 110 points, a 25-point improvement over 2003-04, and set a franchise record for victories in a season. Hired in July, 1997, Ruff holds the longest current tenure among NHL head coaches.

Ruff edged Carolina's Peter Laviolette by one point for the Jack Adams Award as NHL coach of the year, the closest race ever.

"I would trade him that point (in the voting) and take the silver thing he has over there," Ruff said of the Stanley Cup-champion Laviolette. "But it was a tremendous honour to win this.

"It's been 13 years of coaching, some as an assistant. The year we had as a team put me in this position."



Detroit Red Wings' forward Pavel Datsyuk won the Lady Byng Trophy for gentlemanly play. He led the Red Wings in scoring with a career-high 87 points (28 goals, 59 assists). Datsyuk has just 22 minutes in penalties in 75 games.

The other finalists were Patrick Marleau of the San Jose Sharks and 2004 Byng winner Brad Richards of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey went to Anaheim star Teemu Selanne.

Selanne was unable to attend the awards gala because he's in Finland operating a charity hockey school.

"Winning this trophy means a lot to me," Selanne said in a videotaped message.

The King Clancy Memorial Trophy for leadership and humanitarian contribution to his community went to Washington Capitals goaltender Olaf Kolzig.

Kolzig's son, Carson, was diagnosed with autism three years ago.

The veteran goalie established the Carson Kolzig Foundation and, with the help of other players, raises money for the charity to aid others.



CALDER MEMORIAL TROPHY

The Calder Memorial Trophy is awarded annually "to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the National Hockey League," as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.

SIDNEY CROSBY - Center, Pittsburgh Penguins

* Became the youngest player in NHL history to tally 100 points in a season (18 years, eight months, three months younger than Winnipeg's Dale Hawerchuk in 1981-82).
* Led all rookies in assists (63), ranked second in goals (39) and points (102).

ALEXANDER OVECHKIN - Left Wing, Washington Capitals (Winner)

* Led all rookies in scoring with 106 points (52 goals, 54 assists), became the second rookie in history to tally 50 goals and 100 points in a season (Winnipeg's Teemu Selanne, 1992-93).
* Led the NHL in shots (425), ranked third in points, tied for third in goals.

DION PHANEUF - Defense, Calgary Flames

* Led all rookie defensemen in scoring with 49 points (20 goals, 29 assists), became the third blueliner in NHL history to score 20 goals as a rookie (New York Rangers' Brian Leetch, 23 in 1988-89, Colorado Rockies' Barry Beck, 22 in 1977-78).

FRANK J. SELKE TROPHY

The Frank J. Selke Trophy is awarded annually "to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game," as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.

ROD BRIND'AMOUR - Center, Carolina Hurricanes (Winner)

* Voted a Selke Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Led all forwards in ice time per game (24:17).
* Led all players in face-offs taken (2,145), ranked third in face-off winning percentage (59.1%).

MIKE FISHER - Center, Ottawa Senators

* Voted a Selke Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Recorded single-season career highs in plus-minus (+23) and shorthanded goals (four).
* The Senators allowed 211 goals, the fewest in the Eastern Conference and third fewest overall.

JERE LEHTINEN - Right Wing, Dallas Stars

* A Selke finalist for the sixth time; won the trophy in 1998, 1999 and 2003, was third in 1997, 2002.
* Vying to become the first four-time Selke winner since Montreal's Bob Gainey captured the award the first four years it was presented (1978-1981).

HART MEMORIAL TROPHY

The Hart Memorial Trophy is awarded annually "to the player adjudged to be the most valuable to his team," as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.

JAROMIR JAGR - Right Wing, New York Rangers

* Voted a Hart Trophy finalist for the sixth time; finished first in 1999, second in 1995, 1998 and 2000 and third in 2001.
* Finished second in League scoring with 123 points (54 goals, 69 assists).
* Set Rangers franchise records for goals and points in a season.

MIIKKA KIPRUSOFF - Goaltender, Calgary Flames

* Named a Hart Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Won his first William Jennings Trophy (goaltender on the club allowing the fewest goals, 200).
* Led all goaltenders in goals-against average (2.03) and shutouts (10), ranked second in victories (42), third in save percentage (.923).

JOE THORNTON - Center, San Jose Sharks (Winner)

* Named a Hart Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Captured the Art Ross Trophy as the NHLís leading scorer with a career-high 125 points (29 goals, 96 assists).
* Tallied 20-72--92 in 58 games with San Jose following Nov. 30 trade from Boston.

JACK ADAMS AWARD

The Jack Adams Award is awarded annually "to the NHL coach adjudged to have contributed the most to his team's success," as selected by the NHL Broadcasters' Association.

PETER LAVIOLETTE - Carolina Hurricanes

* A Jack Adams finalist for the first time.
* Led the Hurricanes to the best record in franchise history (52-22-8, 112 points) and a 36-point improvement over 2003-04 in his first full season with the club.
* Posted two separate nine-game winning streaks, from Oct. 22-Nov. 11 and Dec. 31-Jan. 19.

TOM RENNEY - New York Rangers

* A Jack Adams finalist for the first time.
* Led the Rangers to a 44-26-12 record for 100 points, a 31-point improvement over 2003-04, and earned a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time since 1997 in his first full season with the club.

LINDY RUFF - Buffalo Sabres (Winner)

* A Jack Adams finalist for the first time.
* Led the Sabres to a 52-24-6 record for 110 points, a 25-point improvement over 2003-04, and set a franchise record for victories in a season.
* Hired in July, 1997, Ruff holds the longest current tenure among NHL head coaches.

JAMES NORRIS MEMORIAL TROPHY

The James Norris Trophy is awarded annually "to the defense player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-around ability in the position," as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.

NICKLAS LIDSTROM - Detroit Red Wings (Winner)

* Earned his seventh nomination as Norris finalist in the past eight seasons; has won the award three times, from 2001 through 2003.
* Led all defensemen in scoring with a career-high 80 points (16 goals, 64 assists) in 80 games.
* Ranked third in the NHL in ice time per game (28:06), posted a +21 rating.

SCOTT NIEDERMAYER - Anaheim Mighty Ducks

* A Norris finalist for the second consecutive season; won the award with New Jersey in 2004.
* Ranked sixth among NHL defensemen with 63 points (13 goals, 50 assists), setting single-season career highs in assists and points.
* Appeared in all 82 games and led the Ducks in ice time per game (25:30).

SERGEI ZUBOV - Dallas Stars

* Voted a Norris Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Finished second among NHL defensemen in scoring with 71 points (13 goals, 58 assists).
* Ranked sixth in the NHL in ice time per game (26:26).
* Passed Craig Hartsburg as the Stars' all-time scoring leader among defensemen.

LADY BYNG MEMORIAL TROPHY

The Lady Byng Memorial Trophy is awarded annually "to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability," as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.

PAVEL DATSYUK - Center, Detroit Red Wings (Winner)

* Named a Lady Byng Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Led the Red Wings in scoring with a career-high 87 points (28 goals, 59 assists).
* Appeared in 75 games, assessed 22 minutes in penalties.

PATRICK MARLEAU - Center, San Jose Sharks

* Named a Lady Byng Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Ranked third on the Sharks in scoring with a career-high 86 points (34 goals, 52 assists).
* The Sharks captain played in all 82 games, received 26 minutes in penalties.

BRAD RICHARDS - Center, Tampa Bay Lightning

* A Lady Byng finalist for the second consecutive season; captured the award in 2004.
* Vying to become the first repeat winner of the Lady Byng since Paul Kariya in 1996 and 1997.
* Led the Lightning in scoring with a career-high 91 points (23 goals, 68 assists).
* Played in all 82 games, assessed 32 minutes in penalties.

LESTER B. PEARSON AWARD

The Lester B. Pearson Award is presented annually to the "NHL's most outstanding player" as voted by fellow members of the National Hockey League Players' Association.

JAROMIR JAGR - Right Wing, New York Rangers (Winner)

* Jagr won the Lester B. Pearson Award in 1998-99 and 1999-00.
* Jagr's 123 points marked the third-highest output of his career, and his 24 power-play goals were a career-best.

ALEXANDER OVECHKIN - Left Wing, Washington Capitals

* Would be the youngest player and first rookie to win the Lester B. Pearson.
* Ranked third in the NHL in goals (52) and points (106).
* His 52 goals accounted for almost one-quarter (23%) of his club's season total.

JOE THORNTON - Center, San Jose Sharks

* Nominated a Lester B. Pearson finalist for the second time (2002-03).
* Thornton's 96 assists in 2005-06 were 25 more than any other player, and the League's highest total in 12 seasons.

VEZINA TROPHY

The Vezina Trophy is awarded annually "to the goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at his position," as voted by League General Managers.

MARTIN BRODEUR - New Jersey Devils

* Earned his sixth career nomination as a Vezina finalist; has captured the award in each of the past two seasons (2003, 2004), finished second in 1997 and 1998, was third in 2001.
* Led all goaltenders in victories (43), recording his NHL-record fifth 40-win season and 10th consecutive 30-win campaign.

MIIKKA KIPRUSOFF - Calgary Flames (Winner)

* Named a Vezina Trophy finalist for the first time.
* Won his first William Jennings Trophy (goaltender on the club allowing the fewest goals, 200).
* Led all goaltenders in goals-against average (2.03) and shutouts (10), ranked second in victories (42), third in save percentage (.923).

HENRIK LUNDQVIST - New York Rangers

* The first rookie voted a Vezina Trophy finalist since Washington's Jim Carey in 1994-95.
* Posted a 30-12-9 record, 2.24 goals-against average and .922 save percentage in 53 games; became the first goaltender in franchise history to record 30 victories as a rookie.
* Ranked fourth among NHL goaltenders in save percentage, was fifth in goals-against average.

OTHER NHL TROPHY WINNERS

Other awards presented at the NHL Television Awards Special on June 22:

San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton won the Art Ross Trophy as the NHLís points leader. Thornton finished the season with 125 points (29 goals, 96 assists). Sharks linemate Jonathan Cheechoo earned the Maurice Richard Trophy as the Leagueís goal-scoring leader (56).

Miikka Kiprusoff captured the William M. Jennings Trophy, presented to the goaltender(s) with more than 25 appearances on the club allowing the fewest goals against during the regular season. The Flames finished the season allowing a League-low 200 goals.

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