The 2018-19 NHL season is coming to a close and what better way to cap off the year by taking a look at the front runners for the NHL Awards? The Awards ceremony, held in Las Vegas, does not take place until after the Stanley Cup has been hoisted, but voting for the awards takes place when the regular season ends. There is no harm in getting our predictions in now.
2018-19 Ted Lindsay Award Predictions
The Colorado Avalanche center was the best player for the Avalanche and was part of one of the best lines in the NHL. The line of Mikko Rantanen, Gabriel Landeskog, and MacKinnon had 105 of Colorado’s 258 goals on the season. MacKinnon was also named to his first career All-Star Game this year along with linemate Mikko Rantanen. Last year after falling just short of the 40-goal mark Mckinnon reached the mark this season. MacKinnon’s line was one of the best lines in the NHL this season. Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog each scored at least 30 goals on the year. His Corsi numbers also show proof to his amazing play this season. He had a 53.2 percent Corsi with a relative Corsi of +5.4 percent. MacKinnon did win the Calder in his rookie year.
Sidney Crosby had a strong year for the Penguins once again. For the ninth time in his career, Crosby scored at least 30 goals which isn’t a surprise for a superstar like Crosby. In the circle, he had his best year since the 2010-2011 season winning 55.5 percent of his draws in the faceoff circle. The Penguins definitely relied upon Crosby more this year with Evgeni Malkin only picking up 21 goals and missing time earlier in the season with an injury. He was strong not only on the powerplay but also led the team with the most assists at even strength. His possession numbers were 53.8 percent Corsi with a relative Corsi of +6.6 percent. His relative Corsi was the highest since the 2013-14 season. Jake Guentzel and Crosby have been the two big scorers for the Pens this season.
Winner: Nikita Kucherov
The winner of the 2019 Ted Lindsay Award goes to Nikita Kucherov. Kucherov despite not leading the league in goals was the best player in the NHL this season. He also broke the franchise record with 128 points on the season and became the highest scoring Russian player in league history. It was a break-out year for Kucherov as he put up 87 assists which broke a previous career high of 61 set last year. With the way, Kucherov broke out this season it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that he’s the Tampa Bay Lightning‘s player surpassing Steven Stamkos. Kucherov recorded at least one point in 63 of his 82 games played this season. If Kucherov wins the Lindsay it would break Connor McDavid‘s two-year streak of winning the award.
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