The NHL earlier today announced the three finalists for the Lady Byng Trophy, and there were no surprises.
The Lady Byng is awarded to the player “who has exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.” Detroit forward Pavel Datsyuk will try to win it for the fourth straight year, challenged by four-time finalist Martin St. Louis of Tampa Bay and New Jersey’s Zach Parise. For what it’s worth, I threw my first-place vote at St. Louis and second-place vote to Datsyuk.
As far as the Boston Bruins are concerned, I gave my fifth-place vote to winger Michael Ryder (27 goals, 26 PIM). So in my mind he would’ve been the team winner of this award. Phil Kessel (36 goals, 16 PIM) and Dennis Wideman (50 points, 34 PIM) probably would’ve been solid candidates. In the future, look for Patrice Bergeron and Blake Wheeler to challenge for a spot among the league’s three finalists.