Photo Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Edmonton Oilers Connor McDavid named finalist for Hart Trophy

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid has been named as a finalist for the Hart Memorial Trophy.

The award is voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association and is given to “the player adjudged to be the most valuable to his team.”

McDavid was far and wide the best player in the NHL this season leading the league with 72 assists and 105 points in 56 games, respectively. McDavid had a 21-point lead on his next closest competitor, teammate Leon Draisaitl, and a whopping 36-point lead over Brad Marchand, who came in third in league scoring.

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McDavid’s 1.88 points per game scored this year was the highest scored by any NHL’er since Mario Lemieux posted a 2.3 PPG pace in 1995-96. His Art Ross trophy win this year marked the 11th in Oilers history and McDavid’s third.

With that, he became the third player to win the Art Ross three times before his 25th birthday joining Wayne Gretzky (five times) and Gordie Howe (three times). He also finished the year with 159 era-adjusted points, the eighth-most in NHL history.

In each of the last five years, McDavid has finished top-five in Hart Trophy voting winning the award once in 2016-17 when he led the league in points (100) and assists (70).

Also named finalists for the award were Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon and Toronto Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews. MacKinnon ranked fourth in league scoring with a career-high 1.35 points per game, while Matthews led the league in scoring with 41 goals.

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Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at [email protected]