Nugent-Hopkins second in Calder voting
A year ago it was Burnaby's Ryan Nugent-Hopkins first and Gabriel Landeskog second. This week it was the other way around.
Colorado Avalance forward Gabriel Landeskog, taken second overall in the 2011 NHL draft behind Nugent-Hopkins who was selected first by the Edmonton Oilers, won the Calder Trophy as the 2012 NHL rookie of the year.
Landeskog collected 1,383 votes to 1,001 for Nugent-Hopkins. Both finished with 52 points with Landeskog scoring 22 goals and Nugent-Hopkins 18. Shoulder injuries meant Nugent-Hopkins played 20 fewer games than Landeskog.
"If Ryan hadn't got hurt I am sure he would have won this," Landeskog said at the awards ceremony in Las Vegas on Wednesday.
"He's just trying to be humble, that's just the kind of guy he is," Nugent-Hopkins told reporters afterward. "I'm pretty good friends with him, he's a great guy and he deserved it.
"It definitely would have been cool (to win) but it was pretty cool to be nominated and just being named one of the top rookies is an honour for me."
One of the knocks against Nugent-Hopkins was he had such a slight frame he would have trouble handling the NHL.
"I think as the season went on I started to feel more comfortable out there," the former Burnaby Winter Club star told the Edmonton Sun. "Like I was an NHLer."