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Vezina Trophy for Best Goalie

best goalie in the NHL? At the end of the season, the general managers of each NHL team vote to answer that question — the best receives the top NHL goalie award, the Vezina Trophy.

The criteria for being the best goalie in the NHL have changed over the years. When the award was introduced after the 1926-27 season, it went to the goalie who played for the team allowing the fewest number of regular-season goals. But at the end of the 1981-82 season, the NHL introduced the Williams M. Jennings Trophy to recognize that accomplishment. At that point, Vezina winners were recognized for being the best overall at the goalie position.

Vezina Trophy for Best Goalie — History

The award is named in honor of Quebec-born Joseph Georges Gonzague Vezina, a Hockey Hall of Fame goalie who played for the NHL Montreal Canadiens from 1910-1925.

Vezina was one of the most dominating players at his position throughout his career. He was the first NHL goalie to record a shutout and the first to record an assist. He played on five Stanley Cup teams, winning twice (in 1916 and 1924), and gave up the fewest number of goals in the league seven times (four times in the NHA, before the Canadiens joined the NHL in 1918).

Tragically, Vezina grew ill at training camp before the 1925-26 season, having developed tuberculosis. After a tearful goodbye to his team, he passed away in March, 1926, at age 39. The NHL introduced the Vezina Trophy for best goalie to honor the memory of this remarkable player.

Vezina Trophy for Best Goalie — Trivia

  • Seven-time winner: Jacques Plante
  • Six-time winners: Bill Durnan, Dominik Hasek
  • Five-time winner: Ken Dryden
  • Four-time winners: Tiny Thompson, Terry Sawchuck, Michel Larocque, Martin Brodeur
  • The first winner of the Vezina Trophy was George Hainsworth, who replaced Vezina with the Canadiens. He won this NHL goalie award in three consecutive seasons.
  • In the 1982-83 season, Pete Peeters became the first (and only) goalie to be named best hockey goalie unanimously — he recorded eight shutouts and went undefeated for 31 games in a row that year. In 1982-83, there was literally no dispute about who was the best goalie in the NHL.
  • In 1973-74, there was a tie for best goalie between Tony Esposito and Bernie Parent, who each recorded the same number of goals allowed.

Vezina Winners — Complete List

  • 2018: Pekka Rinne , Nashville Predators
  • 2017: Sergei Bobrovsky , Columbus Blue Jackets
  • 2016: Braden Holtby, Washington Capitals
  • 2015: Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
  • 2014: Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins
  • 2013: Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
  • 2012: Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
  • 2011: Tim Thomas, Boston Bruins
  • 2010: Ryan Miller, Buffalo Sabres
  • 2009: Tim Thomas, Boston Bruins
  • 2008: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
  • 2007: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
  • 2006: Miikka Kiprusoff, Calgary Flames
  • 2004: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
  • 2003: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
  • 2002: Jose Theodore, Montreal Canadiens
  • 2001: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 2000: Olaf Kolzig, Washington Capitals
  • 1999: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1998: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1997: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1996: Jim Carey, Washington Capitals
  • 1995: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1994: Dominik Hasek, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1993: Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
  • 1992: Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1991: Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
  • 1990: Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1989: Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1988: Grant Fuhr, Edmonton Oilers
  • 1987: Ron Hextall, Philadelphia Flyers
  • 1986: John Vanbiesbrouck, New York Rangers
  • 1985: Pelle Lindbergh, Philadelphia Flyers
  • 1984: Tom Barrasso, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1983: Pete Peeters, Boston Bruins
  • 1982: Billy Smith, New York Islanders
  • 1981: Denis Herron/Michel Larocque/Richard Sevigny, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1980: Don Edwards/Bob Sauve, Buffalo Sabres
  • 1979: Ken Dryden/Michel Larocque, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1978: Ken Dryden/Michel Larocque, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1977: Ken Dryden/Michel Larocque, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1976: Ken Dryden, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1975: Bernie Parent, Philadelphia Flyers
  • 1974: Tony Esposito, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1974: Bernie Parent, Philadelphia Flyers
  • 1973: Ken Dryden, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1972: Tony Esposito/Gary Smith, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1971: Ed Giacomin/Gilles Villemure, New York Rangers
  • 1970: Tony Esposito, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1969: Glenn Hall/Jacques Plante, St. Louis Blues
  • 1968: Gump Worsley/Rogatien Vachon, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1967: Glenn Hall/Denis DeJordy, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1966: Gump Worsley/Charlie Hodge, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1965: Johnny Bower/Terry Sawchuk, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1964: Charlie Hodge, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1963: Glenn Hall, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1962: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1961: Johnny Bower, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1960: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1959: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1958: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1957: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1956: Jacques Plante, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1955: Terry Sawchuk, Detroit Red Wings
  • 1954: Harry Lumley, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1953: Terry Sawchuk, Detroit Red Wings
  • 1952: Terry Sawchuk, Detroit Red Wings
  • 1951: Al Rollins, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1950: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1949: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1948: Turk Broda, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1947: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1946: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1945: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1944: Bill Durnan, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1943: Johnny Mowers, Detroit Red Wings
  • 1942: Frank Brimsek, Boston Bruins
  • 1941: Turk Broda, Toronto Maple Leafs
  • 1940: David Kerr, New York Rangers
  • 1939: Frank Brimsek, Boston Bruins
  • 1938: Tiny Thompson, Boston Bruins
  • 1937: Normie Smith, Detroit Red Wings
  • 1936: Tiny Thompson, Boston Bruins
  • 1935: Lorne Chabot, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1934: Charlie Gardiner, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1933: Tiny Thompson, Boston Bruins
  • 1932: Charlie Gardiner, Chicago Black Hawks
  • 1931: Roy Worters, New York Americans
  • 1930: Tiny Thompson, Boston Bruins
  • 1929: George Hainsworth, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1928: George Hainsworth, Montreal Canadiens
  • 1927: George Hainsworth, Montreal Canadiens