After a crazy NHL season, there is a wide-open competition for several of the league's top awards. Two of the Caps' top players, Alex Ovechkin and John Carlson, have done enough to at least warrant consideration, but there does not seem to be as much buzz around them as you would expect considering the types of seasons they have had.
Alex Ovechkin scored 49 goals to win his seventh Rocket Richard Trophy. He carried the Caps to ninth in the NHL in goals per game despite the team being dead last in shots per game. No player scored a higher percentage of his team's goals than Ovechkin's 18.8-percent. General manager Brian MacLellan made his case for Ovechkin's candidacy for the Hart Trophy as the league's MVP on Friday.
John Carlson's career year, meanwhile, should have him among the short-list of candidates for the Norris. Carlson played close to 30 minutes per game when Matt Niskanen was out of the lineup with an injury. His 68 points led all blueliners this season.
Considering that at the start of the season, it was unknown if Washington would even make the playoffs, the fact that Ovechkin and Carlson were able to help lead the Caps to their third straight Metropolitan Division title should certainly garner them consideration for the Hart and Norris respectively.
Yet, it does not seem like either player is getting much buzz.
See if you can spot who's missing from this list of candidates:
Who is your Hart Trophy winner? pic.twitter.com/oLkkxmEn5x— NHL Network (@NHLNetwork) March 16, 2018
This is not to say Ovechkin and Carlson are the clear winners. The races for both the Hart and the Norris are so close that there are no frontrunners. But in a wide-open field, both players have done enough to at least warrant consideration and make a run at being a finalist. And neither may even get that far.