Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/06/06 at 01:03 PM ET
Just how good was the crop of NHL rookies this season? Well, New York Rangers netminder Henrik Lundqvist was named Thursday as a finalist for the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goalie, but he couldn't crack even the final three in the voting for rookie of the year. In other seasons, Phaneuf and Crosby would have been clear-cut Calder winners. But in this "year of the rookie," being a finalist is a mark of honor in itself given the performances of other first-year players Jussi Jokinen, Ryan Miller, Ray Emery, Petr Prucha and Brad Boyes. In a time that saw the end of the line for Scott Stevens, Mark Messier, Luc Robitaille, Brett Hull, Dave Andreychuk and, in all likelihood, Steve Yzerman, there is something to marvel at what might lie ahead for the next generation that appears more than capable of filling that void.more
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