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Malkin becomes fourth Penguin to win Hart Trophy

Jun 20, 2012, 9:05 PM EDT

Evgeni Malkin Getty Images

For the first time in his career, Evgeni Malkin is the Hart Trophy winner. Pittsburgh’s star forward beat out two other finalists, Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist and Lightning sniper Steven Stamkos, for the award that was presented Wednesday in Las Vegas.

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

Malkin placed first on 144 of the 149 ballots cast. He finished with a score of 1,473 in the voting, well above Stamkos’ 598 points. Lundqvist finished third with 556 points.

Malkin, 25, scored 50 goals and added 59 assists for the Penguins in 2011-12. His 109 points also earned him the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL’s leading scorer.

Malkin becomes the fourth Penguin to win the Hart, joining Mario Lemieux (1988, 1993, 1996), Jaromir Jagr (1999) and Sidney Crosby (2007).

Malkin reacts

“It’s a special day to me,” Malkin said. “I hope it’s not the last one I’ll win.”

During his acceptance speech, Malkin thanked former Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar – and with good reason. Malkin stayed at Gonchar’s home, but perhaps most importantly, the veteran Russian player often acted as a translator for the young star. Malkin said that he’s gradually becoming more comfortable with the language and spotlight in the U.S.

“Every year I’m a little bit more comfortable,” Malkin said. “I learn more English, I watch TV and have more friends in Pittsburgh.”

Ultimately, his game speaks for itself, but another impressive set of hardware says plenty more.

Recent winners:

2006 – Joe Thornton (Boston/San Jose)
2007 – Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh)
2008 – Alex Ovechkin (Washington)
2009 – Alex Ovechkin (Washington)
2010 – Henrik Sedin (Vancouver)
2011 – Corey Perry (Anaheim)

  1. bru308 - Jun 20, 2012 at 9:10 PM

    Go geno! Very deserving

  2. itsallniceonice - Jun 20, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    Just curious who #4 ended up being, I’m not sure where to look it up. Only wondering if Quick made it because in all honesty it should have been Quick instead of Lundqvist with the nomination.

    • handsofsweed - Jun 21, 2012 at 12:02 PM

      Giroux was 4th and Quick was 5th. Makes sense, as both are bad-ass and deserve to be top 5 with no doubt.

  3. dannythebisforbeast - Jun 20, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    8 seeds don’t get MVP votes

    • itsallniceonice - Jun 21, 2012 at 1:12 AM

      Do you follow the NHL?

    • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jun 21, 2012 at 9:02 AM

      Actually Danny is correct – #8 seeds don’t get MVP votes. The natural progression is the NHL looks at seeds 1-7, then skips 8, then looks at the rest of the teams including #10. SCIENCE!

  4. vokounviolatesvirginvag - Jun 21, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    the franchise wins another. big suprise! soup can army

  5. joewilliesshnoz - Jun 21, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    Can’t wait for the Battle for the Hart next year, between Sid and Geno,it’ll be fun to watch, unless you’re a Philthy Flyer fan .

    • chap6869 - Jun 21, 2012 at 10:57 AM

      Yeah, Genos so awesome, he got punked and knocked out of the first round by a 19 year old! HA-HA-HA

      • handsofsweed - Jun 21, 2012 at 11:47 AM

        Averaging 1.33 ppg in the playoffs, with it being an absolutely embarassing fail on Malkin’s part, says volumes. When ABJECT FAILURE = 1.33 ppg, you are the MVP and a 1st-ballot HOF’er when your career is over.

        You guys are becoming Cleveland-ish. Your threshold for success is so low, it’s laughable. “Holding” someone to 1.33 ppg. Winning a 1st round series.

      • jpelle82 - Jun 21, 2012 at 1:17 PM

        malkin’s a career 1.4 ppg in the playoffs and a career 1.24 reg season. stanley cup, 2 art ross’s, hart, conn smythe, lindsay. still not awesome enough i guess. he needs that cover of NHL and then we can start talking about how awesome he is.

  6. eagoalie27 - Jun 21, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    Pit was 4th in the NHL Philly was 6th NJ was 9th.They are in Lundqvist division. That’s 18 games against top 10 teams this year. Where Quick played against PHX 11th overall San Jose 12th and Dallas 18th. The award is based on the regular season, so why should Quick be here over Lundqvist. Every team except the islanders had 100 points in Lundqvist division. Not one team in Quick’s division did. Look at who Henrik played against Crosby, Malkin, Giroux, Kovy, Parise every other night. Quick was great just don’t discredit Lundqvist he got what he deserved.

  7. spavs412 - Jun 23, 2012 at 2:00 AM

    eagoalie27 – great point man! Quick will get his for sure but the Atlantic is tops in the NHL!

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