The Bruins may not have defended their throne as kings of the NHL, but two of their captains have the chance to bring home some hardware 0f their own at the 2012 NHL Awards show in Las Vegas tonight.
B’s captain Zdeno Chara has a chance to win his second Norris Trophy as the game’s top defenseman, and alternate captain Patrice Bergeron has a shot to take home his first Selke Trophy as the league’s best defensive forward.
Chara, who won the Norris in 2009 and was runner-up to Scott Niedermayer in 2004, will have to beat out Nashville’s Shea Weber, and Ottawa’s slick Erik Karlsson if he hopes to win back his title.
Bergeron also has some fierce competition for the Selke, as he goes up against Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk (winner of the award in 2008, ’09, and ’10) and Blues center David Backes, who, like Bergeron, is trying to win the award for the first time.
My Prediction: Bergeron will very deservingly take home the Selke, but Chara will lose out on the Norris to Karlsson, who led the league’s defenseman in scoring this past season. Chara is a much better defensive defenseman than Karlsson, but it’s my gut feeling that the 22-year old Karlsson will win over the voters with his offensive prowess.
UPDATE: ^That happened. You heard it here first.