Connor Hellebuyck is one of three finalists for the Vezina Trophy awarded to the leagues top goaltender as voted on by the NHL’s general managers. The other two nominees are Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators and Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lightning. All three are worthy candidates on top teams in the NHL.
This is an exceptional honour for Hellebuyck, even if he does not win. Hellebuyck went from the Winnipeg Jets backup goalie/sometimes third goalie who was not even available to play every game to the starting goalie who spent large chunks of the season with a call-up as his backup.
Not only is this huge for Hellebuyck, but this is also huge for the Winnipeg Jets. As a team they went from having team MVP Ondrej Pavelec, who was barely a replacement level goalie to a Vezina candidate goalie.
The Vezina Trophy is named after Montreal Canadiens goalie Georges Vezina.