The 2016 Vezina Trophy will be awarded to either Braden Holtby of Washington, Jonathan Quick of Los Angeles, or Ben Bishop of Tampa Bay.
Many know that Holtby’s 2016 campaign was nearly historic, tying Martin Brodeur for most wins in a season with 48. His league leading goals against average (1.29) and save % (.957) also drew admiration.
Truly Holtby is the clear favorite to win.
But let’s remember Quick and Bishop.
Jonathan Quick may not have the glamorous stats compared to his opponents, failing to make top 10 in GAA and SV%, but he rebounded greatly after he, as well as the entire Kings team, struggled out of the gate. The team came back however, and Quick started to play out of his mind. Some speculated weather or not Quick was elite after the streaky start, but he hushed the naysayers and deserves this nomination.
Ben Bishop had a stellar year, posting a 2.01 GAA and .933 SV% both in the top 6 in the league. Just like the Kings, the Bolts struggled at the start of the season, but eventually turned a corner. Bishop has been the main reason for Tampa’s success because of a lackluster season for the triplets and Stamkos. Bishop currently is holding his own in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, well deserving of the nomination.
Now you could say that Roberto Louongo from Florida could be a Vezina candidate, but he didn’t stack up as much as our finalists this year, considering he wasn’t the main reason for Florida’s division dominance. Players like Jaromir Jagr, Aaron Ekblad, and Aleksander Barkov helped the Panthers capture the top of the Atlantic Division.
They may be Vezina finalists, but two have a better trophy in mind, and if they play they way they did in the regular season throughout the rest of the playoffs, you could see them battle it out in the Eastern Conference Finals.