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Sens coach MacLean: Anderson a candidate for Hart, Vezina

May 1, 2013, 4:54 PM EDT

Craig Anderson Getty Images

Even though Craig Anderson missed 18 games this season with an ankle injury, his head coach says that shouldn’t prevent him from being a major award candidate.

“Craig has been outstanding,” Paul MacLean told OttawaSenators.com. “I think for sure he should be considered for the Vezina Trophy and even the Hart Trophy for what he has brought to our team, but the Vezina Trophy for sure.”

In terms of the major statistical goaltending categories, it’s hard to argue with MacLean.

Anderson led the NHL with a 1.69 goals-against average and a .941 save percentage. He also finished tied for 11th in shutouts, with three, an impressive number considering how few games he played.

That limited amount of playing time, though, could end up being his downfall.

Anderson ranks 24th in saves (637), 25th in starts (24) and 26th in total time on ice (1,420:36). As such, his overall workload mirrors that of goalies in time-share situations, like Anaheim’s Jonas Hiller and Viktor Fasth, or Chicago’s Corey Crawford and Ray Emery.

As for the Hart Trophy…

There’s no denying Anderson is a vital piece of the Senators, but it’s hard to justify he was even the most valuable player on his team this season.

During his 18-game absence, Robin Lehner and Ben Bishop combined to go 10-7-3, more than keeping Ottawa afloat in the Eastern Conference playoff chase.

The case could even be made that, during an injury-riddled ’13 campaign, the performances of leading scorer Kyle Turris or veteran defenseman Sergei Gonchar (who played 48 and 45 games respectively) were most vital to Ottawa’s success.

  1. kicksave1980 - May 1, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    I like Anderson a lot, dating back to his days with the Blackhawks organization. He’s a great goalie. But honestly, I think this is a case of his coach trying to pump his tires a little bit as they get ready to go into a big series. Probably a good coaching tactic. Nothing wrong with showing your guys some confidence. No awards this year due to time missed, in my opinion, but hopefully he can be in the conversation next year.

    • iHeartHockey31 - May 2, 2013 at 12:58 PM

      They’re looking at his stats and nothing else. The most valuable player to his team [playoffs or not] was Bob. No one did for their team what he did for Columbus. Having good stats for 1/2 of an already shortened season shouldn’t overshadow a player that worked hard for the entire season bringing a team [no one expected to do anything] to the point where their playoff fate was determined on the last night of the season.

      It’s sad he got hurt, but they have another award for the lowest GAA, the Vezina winner needs to be someone that worked hard all season. And there’s no way Anderson should get the Hart when his team did just fine [if not better] without him. How valuable of a player can he be if the team continued to be successful when he wasnt there?

  2. cameltoews - May 1, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    I also agree with you. Just a case of a coach backing his man, nothing more. He is a good goalie with great numbers but needs a full season in my opinion to be up for those awards. I think Tavares deserves the hart. The Vezina is up for grabs in my opinion. I think a case could be made for 5 or 6 goalies bobrovsky, lundqvist, niemi, rask, Anderson. I’m probably missing a few.

  3. President Charles Logan - May 1, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    todays may 1st not april 1st… wrong fools day ottawa.. so keep dreaming

  4. malkinrulez - May 1, 2013 at 11:01 PM

    No chance on either

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