When are the Western Awards being announced?

This will be short. Last season I chronicled how players based on teams west of the Mississippi have little to no chance of winning awards. True to form, not one award was given to a player that plays most games on the left side of the country.

It's more difficult to complain this season. Ovechkin was superb, and Datsyuk was solid. I can only take issue with one award (Brodeur was the weakest of the three finalists for the Vezina), but now that the western time zones went 0-9 in wards this season, meaning they have won just 4 of the 27 voted on awards since the lockout.

It'll be interesting to see if the voting changes based on the more balanced schedule next season, but it will still be unbalanced enough to affect the voting results.

6 comments:

  1. When Brodeur had the highest saves percentage of the finalists playing in the higher scoring conference, how do you figure he is the weakest of the Vezina nominees? He deserved to win that award.

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  2. I disagree. You're right on your blog when you say wins are not a substantial way to measure a goalies success, and neither is GAA, but Save% isn't either, because it too is highly influenced by team defense and the other teams offense.

    (I am wrong about being the weakest candidate, after looking Lundqvist was the weakest finalist).

    As of right now there isn't a good way to measure a goalie's actual performance, so you have to use a combination of wins, GAA and Save % even though they are admittedly imperfect statistics at best.

    The point wasn't Brodeur-Nabokov though, the point is that a virtual tie (which we had in this case) always goes to the Eastern team. Any Western time zone player that wants to win an award has to be head and shoulders above the Eastern player in order to win.

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  3. It wasn't a virtual tie. That is my point. Brodeur was well ahead of Nabokov. I wouldn't have nominated Nabokov at all for the award. I would have instead nominated Luongo and Giguere along with Brodeur (I dont see how that is an eastern bias - given Luongo and giguere play on the Pacific coast).

    Nabokov played a lot on a very good team. He played well. As a result, his team dependant stats look very good. No way was he the best goalie in the NHL. It wasn't even that close.

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  4. I don't know how you can possibly discount team-biased stats when the only stats that are even kept track of are team biased ones. Check NHL.com and every goalie stat is team biased, so until someone comes along and does some sabermetrics-style assessment of goalies (And I am looking forward to that day) you either take no stats into consideration, or all of them.

    But if I were playing by the rules you laid out above, I would think that Tim Thomas, Ilya Bryzgolav and JS Giguere should have been the Vezina finalists. Both Bryzy and Thomas played for poor clubs, yet had outstanding save %'s.

    The fact isn't whether stats like GAA and Wins should be taken into account, the fact is that they are weighed heavily by the voters. In that sense, Nabokov and Brodeur were in a virtual tie.

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  5. If you want to reduce the Vezina race to one number (and that owuld be significant oversimplification) that number should be goals saved. It still runs into problems with shot quality (something that benefitted Nabokov - his defence was very good and allowed less high quality shots than most).

    Looking at goals saved, Nabokov is nowhere near the league lead.

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  6. The links in your old post no longer work, even though from the description, I would tentatively agree with you that it's probably the best way to judge it.

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