The Vancouver Canucks have just announced their annual team awards. Here are my picks of who I think should win each award.
While the Vancouver Canucks team awards may not mean much in the big scheme of things, it’s a nice way for the fans and the organization to show their appreciation for the effort these players turned in every night. Here are the awards for this season, and who has my vote.
Cyclone Taylor “Most Valuable Player” Award
My pick for this award is Elias Pettersson. I would say the only other Canuck who could give Pettersson a run for his money is goaltender Jacob Markstrom. But to me, how can a rookie who has delivered seven game-winning goals for your team not win it?
A rookie who now holds your franchise record for points in a rookie season, on top of that. Pettersson has been electrifying this year and in my opinion, is the obvious choice for team MVP. Markstrom is an extremely close second, however.
If it weren’t for the play of Markstrom on most nights, the Canucks would have suffered many more blowout losses than they did this season. He has made a habit of excellence but to me, isn’t more valuable to the team than Pettersson.
Pavel Bure Most Exciting Player Award
Oddly enough, the most exciting player this season on the Canucks is also likely the most valuable player — Pettersson. Watching him dangle through teams desperately trying to knock the puck off his stick, rifle one-timers past goalies, or let go of that wicked wrister of his is exactly what I call exciting.
If I can’t pick Pettersson, my other vote is likely Markstrom. His huge saves this year in extremely key situations have had me up on my feet asking “How did he do that?” many, many times. Some of the saves he made this year were nothing short of remarkable.
One of my favourites is this save against the Florida Panthers, where he robbed Nick Bjugstad with the glove.
There have been many saves this year where Markstrom has had the fans at Rogers Arena on their feet cheering for him, and at times, even chanting, “Marky! Marky! Marky!” To me, he and Pettersson have both been the most valuable and exciting players for the Canucks this year, and I feel like either one of them could win the awards this year.
Fred J. Hume “Unsung Hero” Award
My pick for this award is Richmond native, Troy Stecher. In his third season with the Canucks, Stecher has quietly been one of the most reliable defencemen for the Canucks. He is a player who you know will come to the rink every day ready to work and give his all.
To me, Stecher is a prime example of a player who shows up to play for his city each and every night. It’s something you want your young players to want to do, and it’s been a lot of fun watching Stecher fortify himself a spot in the NHL and on the Canucks blue line.
Head coach Travis Green has repeatedly talked about how solid Stecher has been for the Canucks this year, and praised his effort and compete level all year long. Stecher gives his all each and every night, and has been huge for the Canucks this year. He is my pick for the Unsung Hero Award.
Walter (Babe) Pratt “Best Defenceman” Award
To me, the answer to this one is simple — Alex Edler. The new franchise leader in games played among blueliners seems to have found a new level of play in the last two years.
On a young team, Edler is a quiet defenceman who leads by example, but is always willing to talk to and offer guidance to the team’s young defencemen. Although he has struggled to stay healthy this year, Edler has been the Canucks best defenceman this year, and leads all Canucks’ blueliners in goals and assists.
Edler has also logged tons of minutes this year. This year, Edler’s average time on ice per game is 24:12. When he was hurt, it showed how valuable he is to the team, because the team had to rely on Ben Hutton and Stecher to log close to thirty minutes almost every night.
Edler is my pick to win this award, but I want to hear from all of you! Who are your picks to win each Canucks team award? Let me know in the comments section below!