The NHL awards the Hart Trophy to its MVP and I thought we’d take a look at some of the contenders to win the award are. Pretty much any MVP conversation can start with Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Crosby is 3rd in the NHL with 70 points; 23 goals and 47 assists. The Penguins are 39-18-10 and have 88 points and they are currently 3rd in the Metropolitan division. Crosby is still the best player in the NHL and barring injury he should always be included in any M.V.P. talk. Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks is close to having the best year of his NHL career. Getzlaf has 63 points on the season; 22 goals and 41 assists through 67 games. The Ducks have the most points in the NHL with 93 and a record of 43-20-7. There are some people who think Getzlaf doesn’t belong in the M.V.P. conversation, but the best player on the best team is always a contender to win the award. You’d have to think that New York Islanders Center John Tavares would be in the MVP talk. Tavares leads the NHL in points with 72; 33 goals and 39 assists. The Islanders have 90 points with a record of 43-23-4 and are in 2nd place in the Metropolitan division, but are just one point out of 1st. Being the leagues leading point getter will get you votes and your team going to the playoffs doesn’t hurt either; so look for Tavares to get some MVP votes. How about Washington Capitals Left Wing Alex Ovechkin for MVP Ovechkin leads the NHL in goals with 45 and has added 26 assists for a season total of 71 points just one behind Tavares for the league lead. While Ovechkin may not have the name value that Crosby does, but he’s a name people will recognize. Ovechkin has had a couple of down seasons; well down for him and has bounced back this season. Washington is holding on to one of the Eastern conference wild card spots and you have to wonder if the Capitals don’t make the playoffs if voters would consider Ovechkin for MVP Let’s look at one more MVP candidate and it’s a Goalie. There are people who think goalies shouldn’t win this award, but I have to tell you if I had a vote it would go to Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators. Rinne did miss a little time with an injury, but he’s 36-14-3 in the net with a Goals Against Average (GAA) of 2.09 a Save Percentage of .927 and has three shutouts. The Predators are 42-20-7 and tied for 1st place in the Central division of the Western conference with 91 points. I think Rinne should get some votes because I’m not sure the Predators are a playoff team with him. Here’s five more players that should be in the MVP conversation and might pick up some votes for the award. 1) Rick Nash, New York Rangers. 2) Max Pacioretty, Montreal Canadiens. 3) Nicklas Backstrom, Washington Capitals. 4) Jakub Voracek, Philadelphia Flyers. 5) let’s throw out another goaltender; Carey Price, Montréal Canadiens. As the N.H.L. regular season comes to an end will one of these players set up and win this award or will someone who’s not even mentioned here surprise voters and find a way to become MVP
Now I understand when you’re running a NFL organization you have a salary cap to deal with, but if you’re a fan of the New Orleans Saints are you wondering what their team is doing. Your off-season starts off by bringing Mark Ingram back; you’d think that’s a good start. They add a defensive lineman in Tyrunn Walker; solid move the defense needs help. Linebacker Curtis Lofton is released. I think they said failed physical, but there were salary cap reasons involved. They also terminated the contract of running back Pierre Thomas. While they released a couple of players that had some service time with them not anything earth shattering. Then they send Jimmy Graham and a 4th round pick to the Seattle Seahawks for Max Unger and Seattle’s #1 pick which is 31st in the upcoming draft. While they got a quality player back in Unger; he did have some injury issues and picking at #31 doesn’t guarantee you’ll land a star player. You gave up one of the top tight ends in the NFL It’s clear that Graham and Rob Gronkowski have separated themselves from the other tight ends in the NFL Did they get enough in return for Graham besides moving his salary. The next move saw the Saints send two time Pro Bowl guard Ben Grubbs to the Kansas City Chief for a 2015 5th round draft pick. Grubbs did have a down year in 2014 and the Saints wanted him to take a pay cut, but when they couldn’t agree he was dealt. In another deal the Saints sent wide receiver Kenny Stills to the Miami Dolphins for linebacker Dannell Ellerbe and a 2015 third-round pick. Then the Saints added a free agent as they signed running back C.J. Spiller to a four year $18 million dollar deal. Spiller is a former 1st round draft pick by the Buffalo Bills who at times showed flashes of brilliance, but never turned into the every down back the Bills had hoped he would. He’s battled some injuries throughout his career, but the Saints offense looks like it should be a good fit for him. So it looks like the Saints are going to rely on the running game Ingram, Spiller and Khiry Robinson working in the backfield together, but who is Drew Brees throwing the football to. Marques Colston and Brandin Cooks look to be the top receivers on the roster. Will Nick Toon get a look as the 3rd wideout or is there a free agent out their the Saints might try to sign. Josh Hill and Benjamin Watson are the tight ends on the roster, but they are down grades from Graham. Brees is 35 years old and you have to wonder how many more seasons he’ll have as an elite quarterback. The Saints added some draft picks and may have saved some money or made some salary cap room, but did they improve is the question.
Most experts have already picked the Washington Nationals as the best team in Major League Baseball even though we’re only a week plus into spring training. With their returning roster and the addition of big time pitching free agent Max Schrezer the Nationals look great on paper, but remember they don’t play the games on paper. What;s the one thing that can derail a teams World Series dreams very quickly? Injuries and the Nationals are piling them up. Here’s what the nationals are dealing with right now; Anthony Rendon’s sprained left medial collateral ligament and Drew Storen’s hamate bone joined Yunel Escobar’s strained oblique, Jayson Werth’s surgically repaired right shoulder and Denard Span’s recently repaired core. Is this just a fluke or they way the Nationals season will go.
So how was your week?
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