By Ben Warwick

DENVER (CBS4) – The Avalanche’s superstar defensemen Cale Makar is one step closer to officially being the best defenseman in the NHL. On Monday, Makar was named as one of three finalists for the NHL’s Norris Trophy.

(Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images)

The Norris Trophy is awarded to the league’s “defense player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-round ability in the position.” Also among the finalists are Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi and the Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman.

Makar leads NHL defenseman in goals with 28. He’s just the fifth defenseman in the last 30 hears to hit that total. He’s second in points with 86 (28 goals and 58 assists), and now leads the franchise in goal and point totals for the position. He is a finalist for the trophy for the second straight year, and is the fourth defenseman in league history to be voted a finalist for an NHL award in each of his first three seasons.

(Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images)

If he wins, Makar will become the first Norris Trophy winner in Avalanche history. Rob Blake, Ray Bourque, and Sandis Ozolinsh have all had top-three finishes for the Avalanche.

The NHL award winners will be announced later this summer.

Ben Warwick