Colorado Avalanche starts Nathan MacKinnon and Cale Makar are earning the accolades they deserve. The whole team is.
The Colorado Avalanche, like every other NHL team, are on hockey hiatus. The whole league is on pause, and both the awards show and draft have been put on an indefinite hold.
We may not get a Calder Trophy or Hart Trophy winner this year. We may not even get a Stanley Cup winner.
Every year, on April Fools’ Day, I do a post to joke around with our readers and to make some comment about what I’m seeing or what I’d like to see. Well, this year the coronavirus has played one big April Fools’ prank on all of us, and all I’d like to see Avs-wise is that — the Avs. So, I’m dropping the pretense right away and telling you why I am awarding the Calder to Cale and Hart to MacKinnon.
This ain’t no joke. I genuinely believe they’re the most deserving players.
Cale Makar with the Calder Trophy
The NHL awards the Calder Trophy every year to “the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the league.”
Granted it was last season, but Makar entered his first-ever NHL game during the playoffs… and scored his first NHL goal. He was the first-ever defenseman to earn that accomplishment.
This season, Makar has been a top-pairing defenseman and the quarterback of the first power play unit. He’s earned 12 goals and 38 assists for 50 points in 57 games. That amounts to .877 points per game, as a rookie defenseman.
The only rookie who has a higher points total is the Vancouver Canucks’ Quinn Hughes. He’s recorded 8 goals and 45 assists for 53 points. He’s played 68 games, though — a full 11 more than Makar, and just three points extra. That amounts to .849 points per game.
Hughes is a great player who should have a wonderful career. I think Makar is just a step better — he’s elite. So, I’m awarded the Calder Trophy to Cale Makar in the name of the NHL.
Nathan MacKinnon for the Hart Trophy
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The NHL awards the Hart Trophy to the player “judged most valuable to his team.” MVP.
The Colorado Avalanche go the way Nathan MacKinnon goes. He has recorded 35 goals and 58 assists for 93 points in 69 games. That points total is significantly better than number two on the team for scoring, the rookie Makar and his 50 points. So, that 93 points represents 43 more points than the next-best player on the team.
I mention that specifically because MacKinnon lost out on the Hart two years ago because it was said Taylor Hall was operating under those kinds of circumstances — he was legions better than the next-best scorer, a rookie. That year, Nate’s winger, Mikko Rantanen, had 87 points.
Meanwhile, some sports writers have stated their favorite for the Hart right now is Leon Draisaitl with his 110 points, which is impressive. However, just a couple months ago, their favorite for the Hart was Draisaitl’s teammate, Conor McDavid, who’s sitting on 97 points.
Nope. If MacKinnon lost out two years ago because his teammates bolstered him, then both Draisaitl and McDavid lose out this year.
Not only is MacKinnon the MVP of the team, he’s a staunch on-ice leader. So, I hereby award him the Hart Trophy in the name of the NHL.
And, hey, I’m awarding the Colorado Avalanche the Stanley Cup.
Here are some past April Fool’s posts that ran a little different.
- Pepsi Center Name Change
- New Fees at Pepsi Center
- Patrick Roy to Buy Team
- NHL to Award Avalanche Loser Point
- Avalanche to Debut Snow Surge for Playoffs
Enjoy your day, Colorado Avalanche fans!