Thursday, June 23, 2011

Congrats Are Due

 LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 22: Nicklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings poses after winning the James Norris Memorial Trophy during the 2011 NHL Awards at the Palms Casino Resort June 22, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

I'd be seriously remiss if I didn't mention the fact that The Perfect Human won his seventh Norris trophy last night in Vegas.  Here's Scott Burnside, from ESPN's NHL Awards wrap-up:
That plus-minus stat? It's wildly overrated, as Detroit's Nicklas Lidstrom won his seventh James Norris Memorial Trophy with a minus-2 rating. Still, Lidstrom was full value for the honor in what was the closest race since 1996.

Lidstrom edged out Nashville captain Shea Weber by a 736-727 margin. For the record, Weber was plus-7 and Zdeno Chara was a whopping plus-33. Chara was hot on the Norris trail, too; he had 33 first-place votes, while Lidstrom had 35 and Weber 32.

Lidstrom had 62 points during the season, second among all NHL defensemen, and logged considerable ice time with injuries to other Detroit defensemen, including Brian Rafalski.

"When I came over, I was just trying to make the team," Lidstrom said. "I figured I'd stay a few years and see what it's like playing over here and then go back to Sweden. I never envisioned myself playing for 20 years and having the success that I've been part of."
Success?  There's The Mom of All Understatements from the always humble and understated Lidstrom.  TPH is simply the BEST defenseman of this generation and (arguably) second only to the great Bobby Orr as the NHL's all-time best at his position.  Success, indeed.

TPH deserves another trophy, too... sumthin' along the lines about havin' The Perfect Family.  Regarde:

Wow.  Them Swedes have GOOD genes, don't they?


  1. Norris trophy with a minus rating. He deserved it over Weber and Chara? I'm going with no.

    Methinks a decision was made in the "he might retire, so we'd better give him another one" category.

    The bummer is that, even though this isn't Lidstrom's fault, this kind of jackassery makes me want to see him fail miserably next season.

  2. As Burnside said... "That plus-minus stat? It's wildly overrated." You look at who Lidstrom played against... which is to say the top lines in the league, night after night, game after game, for all 82 games... plus his point totals for the year and the case is easily made for his seventh Norris. Unless you're a chronic and habitual Wings-hater, of course. ;-)

    I'll agree with you about the awards, to a point. I couldn't figure out a way to work it into this post but the awards SHOW was fuckin' painful. The show was so lame I had the teevee on mute most of the time.

  3. Chara was a friggin plus 33 with 44 or 46 points, and he (and Weber) played every bit as much against the opponents' top lines, night after night, game after game. So the case is easily made against Lidstrom's 7th Norris, unless you're a perpetual Wings-jobber, of course;-)

  4. I might buy the Weber argument, but not Chara... who played in front of Thomas (a BIG part of your plus-minus stat, no?) and against a much weaker set of teams (which is a back-handed way of sayin' the East's teams are of generally lower quality than the West's). Come to think on it, Weber played in front of Rinne, so there's that.

    "Wings-jobber." Heh.

  5. Them Swedes have GOOD genes

    I heartily agree - being 1/4 Swedish myself.

  6. I love all the qualifications: "plus/minus is an overrated stat," "Chara played in front of the Vezina winner," "the East is Weak." Was he the best defenseman or not? I think not. It's like listening to you and Morgan debate Palin, except this discussion is interesting, and involves people who aren't trying to swindle us for their ballooning celebrity.

    And on the Tim Thomas comment: Is that your backhanded admission that Howard is every bit as overrated as every non-Wings fan on Earth knows he is?

  7. Was he the best defenseman or not? I think not.

    You didn't have a vote. Those that DID have a vote thought he was, n'est pas?

    Is that your backhanded admission that Howard is every bit as overrated as every non-Wings fan on Earth knows he is?

    Did I mention Howard? I think not. ;-)

  8. You mentioned that Chara's excellent +/- was a result of him playing in front of Thomas (a BIG part, as you said). Next step? Lidstrom's poor +/- was a result of him playing in front of Howard. That's how that works.

    As for people's votes being a reliable measure of who is the best at something, I point you to Election '08.

  9. Oh, and Richards and Carter are officially out of Philly.

  10. re: Howard. See here. Better save percentage and GAA than Luongo, and one/one-thousandth of a point in save percentage behind Roloson for #4 (of 13) in the playoffs, with a better GAA. Not Vezina level, but not too shabby. "Good enough," as Holland would say.

    Thanks for the heads-up on Philly. I must go read...

  11. So Lidstrom's +/- should be better? Which argument are you making here?

    Lots of trade rumors flying out there right now. Paul Stastny in a lot of them.

  12. Check that on save percentage vs. Luongo. Better GAA, tho.

  13. I'm simply sayin' Nick deserved the Norris. You're sayin' he didn't. All the rest is argument. ;-)


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