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Published:June 23rd, 2011 23:21 EST
Ice Awards in the Sun

Ice Awards in the Sun

By Michael Weidenhamer

What better place to hand out hockey awards than a desert? Last night at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, the NHL had its annual awards ceremony. It is usually held in Toronto, but apparently the NHL wanted to jazz things up. Either that or try to appeal to people who most likely don`t care about hockey.

Nicklas Lidstrom, the Detroit Red Wings` steady light, won the Norris Trophy for the seventh time last night. The Norris is given to the best defenseman of the year. He now has the second most Norris Trophy wins of all time, tied with Doug Harvey. He beat out Bruins captain Zdeno Chara and Predators captain Shea Weber. It was one of the closest Norris races of all time, with Lidstrom only getting nine more points in the voting than Weber.

Surprisingly, the always gentlemanly Lidstrom did not win the Lady Byng Trophy. The Lady Byng is given to whoever displays the best sportsmanship. Lidstrom has never won it before. This year it was given to Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Tim Thomas, the Bruins` Stanley Cup winning goalie, won the Vezina Trophy. The Vezina is given to the NHL`s best goalie, and with this win he joins Bernie Parent as the only players to win the Stanley Cup, the Conn Smythe, and the Vezina in one season. This is even more remarkable considering that he`s 37 years old.

The Hart Trophy, the NHL`s most valuable player award, should be given to players who lead their teams far into the playoffs. That was not the case this year, as Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks won it. He most likely got it for having the most goals of the season, with 50. It should have been given to the Canucks` Ryan Kesler or St. Louis, players who actually did lead their teams far into the playoffs. 

Will Nicklas Lidstrom reach eight Norris Trophy wins, the record that Bobby Orr holds? Will Tim Thomas continue to excel as he gets older? Will the NHL realize that the most valuable players are the winners, not the scorers? Tune in next year to find out!