The National Hockey League announced on Sunday that Florida Panthers captain Aleksander Barkov has been named a finalist for the 2020-21 Frank J. Selke Trophy, awarded annually “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game.”
Barkov, 25, appeared in 50 of 56 regular season games with Florida in 2020-21, registering 58 points (26G/32A). Barkov led the Cats in goals (26), even-strength goals (18), even-strength points (38) and shots on goal (176), while leading the team’s forwards in takeaways (39) and total ice time (1,046:52).
The 6-foot-3, 215-pound native of Tampere, Finland, registered a career-high 54.9 faceoff win percentage, taking 1,026 total faceoffs. Barkov owned a 59.0 offensive zone faceoff win percentage and 53.2 defensive zone faceoff win percentage. The Panthers captain is one of just 10 NHL forwards to take over 1,000 faceoffs this season. Of the 10 forwards, Barkov had the fewest games played. His 20:56 average time on ice per game ranked ninth among NHL forwards.
Originally selected second overall by Florida in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Barkov won the 2019 Lady Byng Trophy awarded annually “to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.”
Panthers prospect Anton Lundell had to settle for a silver medal at the 2021 IIHF World Championship in Latvia as Canada rallied for a 3-2 overtime win over Finland.
The 19-year-old didn’t figure in the scoring or register a shot on goal. He played 15:43, won 6-of-9 faceoffs and finished the game with an even rating.
Nick Paul scored the golden goal off a set up from tournament scoring leader Connor Brown 6:26 into the extra session.
Ludell finished the tournament with 7 points (4G/3A) in ten total games played. We eagerly await his arrival at training camp in the fall.
Stanley Cup playoffs
Former Florida expansion draft casualty Jonathan Marchessault notched a hat trick in the Vegas Golden Knights impressive 5-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche. After giving up an early goal to Brandon Saad, Marc-Andre Fleury finished with 17 saves, and William Karlsson dished out three assists. The series is now tied at two games apiece.
Joel Armia totaled three points, including two shorthanded goals, for the Montreal Canadiens in a 5-1 win against the Winnipeg Jets in Game 3 at Bell Centre. Carey Price stopped 26 shots for the Habs, who go for the sweep tonight on home ice. Adam Lowry, son of Dave, scored the only goal for the visiting Jets.