On Tuesday, the final five NHL awards are being handed out. Last up for the night was the Hart Memorial Trophy, given to the most valuable player as voted by the PHWA. After receiving the Ted Lindsay Award for the same honor as voted by the players, Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews was this year’s recipient. The other finalists were Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin and Oilers center Connor McDavid.
It was a career year for Matthews in terms of goals (60), assists (46), points (106), and shots on goal (348) with his goal and shots totals leading the league despite only playing in 73 games. His goals per game rate (0.82) was the highest in the NHL since Mario Lemieux back in the 1995-96 campaign. That helped lead Toronto to the second spot in the Atlantic Division and their most successful season in franchise history in terms of points. Matthews is the third Maple Leaf to win the Hart and the first to do so in quite some time as Toronto’s previous winner was Ted Kennedy back in 1954-55.
Matthews received 61% of first-place votes among the 195 ballots cast while appearing on all but two of them. That helped him finish more than 500 points ahead of McDavid to take home the award with Shesterkin coming a distant third. Four other players received a first-place vote – Calgary’s Johnny Gaudreau, Florida’s Jonathan Huberdeau, Nashville’s Roman Josi, and Minnesota’s Kirill Kaprizov.
The full voting results can be found here.