Vezina Trophy Predictions: March 31
Now being over 75% of the way through the season, the awards races are beginning to shape up.
The Vezina Trophy is awarded to the top goaltender in the NHL every year, with Marc-Andre Fleury winning it last year with the Vegas Golden Knights.
The leader in this race is New York Rangers’ goaltender Igor Shesterkin, who’s been the favorite for this trophy for a long time.
Shesterkin owns a 32-9-3 record with a 2.11 goals-against average and three shutouts, and he also leads the NHL in save percentage with .936.
Flames’ goaltender Jacob Markstrom is another solid candidate, as he leads the league with nine shutouts.
This is essentially a bounceback campaign for Markstrom, as he holds a 2.16 goals-against average compared to last season’s 2.66.
Frederick Andersen owns a league leading 2.05 goals-against average while serving as the Hurricanes’ goaltender this season.
Predators’ Juuse Saros has helped the team surprise this season while holding a record of 33-20-3.
Considering that this team was projected to miss the playoffs and potentially rebuild, it’s very impressive that Saros has helped them fight for the last seed in the Central Division.
Andrei Vasilevskiy has already won a Vezina Trophy but he consistently puts up good numbers and plays on a very talented team in the East.
His numbers are still very good, and they’ve somehow arguably been better than his stats from his Vezina-winning season.
The next few goaltenders are all very good but most likely will not be in the race to win the trophy.
Sergei Bobrovsky has improved vastly from the time when he joined the Panthers, with his save percentage going up by .014 and his goals-against average going down .62.
The Panthers are at the top of the Atlantic and are on track to be the top seed in the Eastern Conference, which has been helped by the improvements of Bobrovsky.
Avalanche goaltender Darcy Kuemper is one of the better goaltenders in the league this season and has performed above expectations even with the injuries to the roster especially on defense.
Connor Hellebuyck is commonly known as one of the best goaltenders in the NHL even though the Jets have underwhelmed this season.
The team’s underwhelming season can’t be attributed to Hellebuyck, though, as he has been great for them considering the offensive woes.
Penguins’ goaltender Tristan Jarry has rebounded well from his postseason collapse last season and currently boasts a 2.33 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage.
Thatcher Demko has quietly had a very good season for the Canucks even with all the turmoil and rumors surrounding the team.
The race is very top heavy, but it should shake out to Shesterkin winning it, Markstrom being the runner up and Andersen coming in third place.
James Morrison is a second-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email email@example.com.
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