For the second time in his career, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty was a Norris Trophy finalist. For the second time, Doughty didn't win, as the Norris was awarded to Erik Karlsson. Doughty finished third in 2010, but he moved up to a much closer second this time around, ahead of P.K. Subban.
Interestingly, Doughty racked up more first-place votes than anyone else, but Karlsson had many more second and third place votes. As a reminder, here's what the NHL's press release announcing the finalists said about Doughty:
Doughty anchored a Los Angeles defense that finished in the top 10 in the NHL in goals against for the sixth consecutive season. He played in all 82 games for the second time in his career (also 2009-10), pacing the League in total time on ice (2,377:40) and ranking second in average time on ice (28:59). Doughty also posted 7-39—46, his second-best offensive season behind 2009-10 (16-43—59), and led the NHL in a number of enhanced statistics categories, including the team puck possession metric SAT (shot attempts differential) – the Kings registered 410 more shot attempts than they allowed with him on the ice at 5-on-5. Doughty is a Norris Trophy finalist for the second time after finishing third in voting in 2009-10.
It looks like the Kings' ninth-place finish in the Western Conference cost Doughty the Norris. The workhorse nature of this season, his continued possession dominance, and the accumulation of achievements over the last five years were enough to get him into a very close second, which is impressive enough as it is.
So this means another year of announcers referring to him as both a "future Norris Trophy winner" and, in spite of this, "the best defenseman in the game." Also, the top of the trophy looks like a nice place to hang a couple gold medals from, so there's that.
We'll have more, including our analysis of Doughty's 2014-15 season, tomorrow.