Kipper scores!

STEVE MACFARLANE -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 9:05 AM ET

There's no doubt Miikka Kiprusoff would trade in any individual awards for another crack at the Stanley Cup but his nomination for a pair of the NHL's top trophies is an honour, nonetheless.

The Calgary Flames star netminder is a finalist for the Hart Memorial Trophy, given to the player deemed most valuable to his team across the league, and the Vezina, which goes to the NHL's best goaltender.

The Flames fell 3-0 in Game 7 of the first round to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks Wednesday night at the Saddledome, ending their hopes of a return to the Cup final.

One other Flame earned a nod from the voting writers. Rookie defenceman Dion Phaneuf, who appears destined for a long and impressive professional career at one of the toughest positions in hockey, joins Pittsburgh Penguins centre Sidney Crosby and favourite Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals as finalists for the Calder Trophy given to the best freshman.

Phaneuf will likely have to be content being nominated, although five former Flames -- Sergei Makarov, (1990), Joe Nieuwendyk (1988), Gary Suter (1986), Willi Plett (1977) and Eric Vail (1975) claimed the top-rookie trophy.

Kiprusoff was arguably the biggest factor in the Flames' Northwest Division title winning year, which saw them reach 103 points and claim the William M. Jennings Trophy for fewest goals allowed. Kiprusoff posted a 2.07 goals-against average.

The 29-year-old Finn was second to New Jersey's Martin Brodeur with 42 wins, one behind his fellow Vezina finalist's total. Kiprusoff also led the league with 10 shutouts, owned the third-best save percentage (.923) and played 74 games -- one more than Brodeur and one less than Florida's Roberto Luongo.

New York Rangers rookie Henrik Lundqvist is the third finalist for the Vezina, while Joe Thornton of the San Jose Sharks and Rangers star Jaromir Jagr are Kiprusoff's competition for the Hart.

The awards will be handed out in Vancouver on June 22.


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