Mike Green, Zdeno Chara, and Nicklas Lidstrom were announced as the Norris Trophy candidates for the June 18th Awards in beautiful Las Vegas, where the slots are loose and the shrimp cocktails are 99 cents.
Personally, despite the year he had offensively, Mike Green should not win this award on that merit alone. To say a sophomore, despite his offensive prowess and solid defensive play, is a better winner than two veterans who have offensive prowess, but are known for their amazing defensive play is putting the cart before the horse. Green will be a candidate for this award for years to come, I'm sure, but he may need to be taken down this year to motivate him a little more in terms of getting the well-rounded game rather than strictly known for his offensive play.
If you're going to go for the true nature of the award as the best defenseman, you narrow it down to Chara and Lidstrom. Both of which have decent offensive numbers, but are spotlighted for defensive play and smart hockey prowess. Lidstrom could be the hands-on favorite again sheerly on his consistency as a player and his track record with this award as it is. Lidstrom had a third straight +30 and above year, a fourth straight 50+ point year, but may be showing his signs of age with his numbers dropping from the past few years.
Personally, I think this could be Zdeno Chara's year. He's really stepped into a role as captain as a big time leaders for the East leading Bruins and didn't have too shabby of offensive numbers too boot. Chara could have been seen as overlooked in the past few seasons and may get his comeuppance this season with the Norris victory. It's about time that this imposing presense on the blue line get acknowledge by the voters as a solid force on defense and worthy of an award like this.