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Five PHWA voters left Edmonton Oilers forward Connor McDavid off their Hart Trophy ballots

And one of them kept Hart Trophy winner Auston Matthews off their ballot, too.

NHL award voting is always a very subjective thing. A lot of it might have to do with how often they view certain players, a lot of it might have to do with voter fatigue. It appears the latter struck hard this year.

So hard, in fact, that there were five PHWA voters who left the NHL’s leading scorer, Connor McDavid, off their ballots entirely.

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This is, quite frankly, inexcusable. While 119 voters chose Matthews over McDavid for the first spot on their ballots, McDavid also garnered a staggering 122 second and third-placed votes.

Even crazier, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reporter Seth Rorabaugh left McDavid and Matthews off his ballot entirely. I mean… what?! McDavid put up 123 points this year and Matthews scored 60 goals that included a stretch where he put up 50 in 50 games.

Rorabaugh listed his top five, in order, Minnesota Wild forward Kirill Kaprisov, Nashville Predators defenceman Roman Josi, New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin, Florida Panthers forward Jonathan Huberdeau and, in the fifth slot, Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller?

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There can be legitimate arguments for any of the top four to be on ballots, but there’s no way Kaprisov deserved the top spot, let alone Miller at number five.


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]


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