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Ovechkin wins third Hart Trophy

Jun 15, 2013, 7:39 PM EDT

Alex Ovechkin AP

After a bounce-back season in which he led the NHL in goals, Washington captain Alex Ovechkin won the Hart Trophy on Saturday as the league’s most valuable player.

Ovechkin, 27, beat out New York Islanders alternate captain John Tavares and Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby for the award.

The win marks the third time Ovechkin has captured MVP honors. He won back-to-back Hart Trophies in 2007-08 and 2008-09, and now joins some elite company among players that have won at least three league MVPs: Howie Morenz, Eddie Shore, Gordie Howe, Bobby Orr, Bobby Clarke, Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky.

Ovechkin also remains the only player in Capitals franchise history to have won the Hart.

This year, he did it on the strength of 32 goals in 48 games and finishing third in the NHL in scoring, with 56 points.

His play coincided with Washington’s remarkable in-season turnaround — left for dead after a 5-10-1 start to the season, the Capitals caught fire down the stretch and won their fifth Southeast Division title in the last six years.

Ovechkin led the Capitals in goals, power play goals, shots on goal and hits in 2013. His goal-per-game ratio would’ve worked out to roughly 55 over the course of an 82 game season — a telling statistic, given the Russian sniper’s goal production had slipped over the previous two seasons.

After scoring 52, 46, 65, 56 and 50 goals in his first five years in the NHL, Ovechkin scored 32 in 2010-11 and 38 in 2011-12.

Hart Trophy Top 10 voting

1. Alex Ovechkin, WSH 1090 (50-43-40-27-8)

2. Sidney Crosby, PIT 1058 (46-42-41-29-12)

3. John Tavares, NYI 919 (38-38-33-29-21)

4. Jonathan Toews, CHI 886 (39-35-29-29-19)

5. Sergei Bobrovsky, CBJ 311 (4-12-13-25-47)

6. Patrick Kane, CHI 157 (2-6-9-14-8)

7. Ryan Getzlaf, ANA 96 (0-0-8-11-23)

8. Steven Stamkos, T.B. 28 (0-1-2-2-5)

9. Martin St. Louis, T.B. 20 (0-1-0-2-7)

10. Pavel Datsyuk, DET 18 (0-0-1-2-7)

  1. btlpper68 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:44 PM

    Milbury must b thrilled

  2. ludacrish05 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    Nice, but caps fans still want them to hoist the cup…I want our parade

    • bardown66 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:56 PM

      I do not foresee that, not with holtby in net and not with McPhee running things. Not the penguins are sitting better in net with fleury.

    • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:11 AM

      No going to happen with crazy 8 leading the team.

  3. pitpenguinsrulez - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    I guess everyone felt bad for this sore loser and gave him an award. Ovie wins player trophies and Crosby wins team trophies…big differenece! Crosby wins what trophies matter more than that Choke artist known as Ovechkin…go head and give me a thumbs down all you haters out there

    • hockeyflow33 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:48 PM

      Crosby plays on a better team; he also only has 1 Cup to his name so let’s not act like he’s Gretzky helping to win 4

    • stakex - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:01 PM

      Your comment is nothing but hate, but you refer to others as “haters”. Pot meet kettle.

      How many points did Crosby have in that Boston series btw?

      • lordstanley65 - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:44 AM


    • russianmachine8 - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:21 PM

      wow 1st of all im a Caps fan living in Pittsburgh): Great city great fan bases for steelers, pens and Bucs!! Im not saying all pens fans just a small group of you have a lot of nerve talking about CHOKING! Most caps fans will agree with me that Sid is all around a better player then ovie, I cant argue that,my opinion ovie is a better goal score which I think most Pens fans would agree with.Yes ovie hasn’t played his best the last couple of yrs,even though this past yr hes learning new position/System but no excuses he started out slow then heated up THANK GODlol yes he needs to get better on D I think that would help make him a great all around player but who I am I?As far as choking besides the pens winning the cup in 09′ Congrads!!the pens have CHOKED as well 3 1st rd exits? AND this year Shero goes out and gets the Dream team for SID and Geno and what did they do but CHOKE in the Finals with 2 goals in 4 games??So whos the blame for that? Coach?maybe?shero?maybe Mario?No Sid the kid and Geno 2 of the top 5 players in the WORLD have Zero goals and ASST.?so what exactly would you call that?? Choking? My point is they are both great players ,I think the pens have better overall team,GM,OWNER but to say ovie is nothing more then a choker is B/S it takes a team to win in the the playoffs and to win a cup,not just one man!! I think most pens fans will agree with me when I say that the PENS AS A TEAM CHOKED!! That’s 4 yrs in a row? They kinda remind me of my caps team lol goodluck next yr pens fans !!! Cant wait to be in the same division with ya guys !! LETS GO CAPS !!!!!!!!ROCK THE RED

    • lordstanley65 - Jun 16, 2013 at 10:43 AM

      Ok. Cause Tavares should’ve gotten it anyway.

    • don444 - Jun 17, 2013 at 1:44 AM

      I’ll bet you wept when the Bruins embarrassed them didn’t you? Don’t you dare come on here and lie about it either you little sissy.

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:38 AM

      The Pens win team trophies. No single player wins a team award. If this player trophy means nothing, then when you spout all that Crosby has achieved don’t list his individual awards.

      Speaking of choking, lets talk about this recent Pens/Bruins series, or how about last seasons Pens/Flyers series. Both seasons the Pens were expected to win the cup. What happened? Choke, choke, and choke again. The most stacked team in the league couldn’t even get to the finals…..can we say choke?

  4. bardown66 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:55 PM

    The precedent is set, you can be a lazy under achiever for half the year as long as you finish strong you get the award. Not that it matters but my 3 would have been 1. Tavares, 2. Kane, 3. Crosby. Yes Crosby missed time too but unlike ovechkin he wasn’t physically able. He was giving effort every time he did play. That said islanders finish 9th or tenth without Tavares. I’d of picked him. His +\- killed him possibly.

    • stakex - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:05 PM

      Its incorrect to say Ovechkin was being lazy the first half of the year. He had a new position to adapt to, new system to learn, new coach to get use to, and was placed with 3rd/4th liners for the first few weeks. That’s a lot to deal with. Clearly he put in the time and effort and it paid off later in the season… and being put back together with Backstrom didn’t hurt.

      You also missed the point of the Heart. Its about who was most valuable to their team. The Blackhawks and Pens were still cup contenders even without Kane and Crosby. The Caps would have finished 15th in the east without Ovechkin. I will say though that Tavares winning it would have made sense.

      • hockeydon10 - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:18 AM

        Don’t forget he’s also employing hyperbole. Half the year = 24 games, during which he had 20 points. That’s hardly taking half the year off.

  5. 19to77 - Jun 15, 2013 at 7:58 PM

    Oh, look, another glorified scoring title. I’ll go ahead and act like I’m surprised. Win the Rocket or the Art Ross and they’ll just throw the Hart in too, or so the last few years have proven.

  6. pistonhurricane - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:02 PM

    Was Tavares named Captain?

    • pistonhurricane - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:25 AM

      Now they got the article updated to say “alternate” captain John Tavares….. At least my JT91 jersey with the “A” is still current….

  7. westof1club - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    No brainier. Has less to work with around him than any other finalist, consistent goal scoring is the hardest job (next to goalkeeping) on the ice. Guy’s a machine.

    • Windmiller4 - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:53 PM

      I’d say Taveres had less talent around him than Ovechkin.

    • valarmorghuliss - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:32 PM

      Who gives a damn who had who around him, Playoff Flopper had the best regular season, so he wins.

      • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:43 AM

        Playoff Flopper? Are you stupid?

      • valarmorghuliss - Jun 18, 2013 at 2:11 AM

        Ya, playoff flopper, as in he gets a bunch of points in 1 or 2 games in the playoffs and then just stops being world class for 4 or 5. Making it worse is when he goes into flop mode he gives the other teams goals as well.

        He’s had only one great playoff run, that was 5 years ago and the team still came up short.

  8. westof1club - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    Now for the Crosby whiners! Stay true to your fragile leader’s true skill!

  9. sprtsfan1 - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    Devastating choice. As much as I dislike Crosby, Ovechkin is absolute garbage. As long as Crosby was playing he was scoring. Shouldn’t have even been close.

    • taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:42 AM

      Scoring? Goals = scoring. Crosby was 43rd in goals. Shouldn’t even have been in the discussion.

      • don444 - Jun 17, 2013 at 1:46 AM

        Seriously? Incredibly ignorant and ridiculoius comment from this clod, you should be utterly ashamed.

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:51 AM

      Obviously you have no idea what the award is in recognition of. Don’t comment if you are not informed. Don’t use the name sprtsfan1 if you are not an actual fan of the sport. Ovechkin is obviously one of the best players to play the game. He is, however, not a team unto himself. Like most team sports, one player cannot win alone. Do you honestly believe Crosby would have the numbers he has if he didn’t have Geno and Neal taking some of the heat off of him? Cover Ovechkin and you shut down the entire Caps team. Crosby is very fortunate he has been able to play on a stacked team. The question is, why does a team that is as stacked as the Pens have been for so many years, only have one cup. Can we all say Choke?

      • jjherm7 - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:04 PM

        The Hart Trophy is not for the player who is most valuable to his team, that’s what team MVP awards are for. It’s for who’s most valuable to the league in a season. I’m sick of everyone making the case for Ovi and Tavares that they had no team around them and that’s why they should have won. And that Crosby has a super team around him, so no wonder he did so well before he got injured. Yes, I honestly believe Crosby would have similar numbers if he didn’t have some of the players around him that he does. Take a look at the players he has around him. His line is Pascal Dupuis and Chris Kunitz (for the majority of the season). Did Dupuis ever have the kind of numbers he has now when he was playing for Atlanta? Did Kunitz with Anaheim? Backstrom probably has more talent than both those guys. No, you see Crosby make the players around him better players. If Ovi was able to do that then no one could use the excuse that “the team around him is horrible” like I hear constantly.

        It’s unfortunate that Crosby got injured, because this would not have even been a discussion. I’m actually surprised it was regardless. I just think the voters didn’t want a Penguin to get the award 2 years in a row.

  10. live4hockey - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:26 PM

    I don’t think Crosby fans really care…he won the Lindsay, that’s fine…Caps without Ovi wouldn’t have made the playoffs, the Pens would have without Crosby. This isn’t the who is a better player award, that’s the Lindsay…this is the hi is more valuable to their team award.

  11. Stiller43 - Jun 15, 2013 at 8:37 PM

    It took him going on an absolute terror and crosby to miss a quarter of the season to barely beat him in points, and undoubtedly was the deciding factor in this voting.

    • REDSKINSFORLIFE - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:02 PM

      I am glad to see that stupidity is still alive and well in pitt. Crosby is a shell of himself because he more like glass joe than Iron Mike. Maybe if Cindy actually played a full season or showed up in a series that mattered he would win something. Cindy is the consummate whiner and always injured hockey player. Malkin was a good signing, but keeping Cindy for the next 10 years is a HUGE mistake.

      • valarmorghuliss - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:34 PM

        Been to 2 finals, has a ring and and Gold Medal
        Im not a Pens fans but you’re a fool

      • taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:20 AM

        His team won those. Ovechkin is by far the superior talent.

      • valoisjoeybfeld69 - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:18 AM

        Stupidity! Coming from the person wishing another head injury to a player. You have the balls to call out others for stupidty….. They should ban you from posting here.

      • jjherm7 - Jun 20, 2013 at 5:13 PM

        You obviously don’t watch much hockey, let alone Penguins games. Crosby still almost won the scoring title missing 1/3 of the season. Those trophies Ovi got might as well have an asterisk engraved on the name plate. I don’t think a puck to the face or a fluke hit to the head constitute a player as being “injury prone”. I think Sid’s just had some rotten luck the last couple years with some flukey injuries. Next you’ll tell me Lemieux’s a whiner because he had a little cancer during his career.

        Showing up for series. Here’s Ovi showing up in a series…

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 1:55 AM

      Deciding factor was Ovechkin is more important to his team than Crosby is to his. Pens kept on winning when Crosby was out hurt (as usual). Caps can’t win if Ovechkin doesn’t score. Obvious choice for this award.

  12. rockthered1286 - Jun 15, 2013 at 9:12 PM

    It doesn’t matter how many times you explain to people that Ovi had to learn a new position in a new system with a new coach all on the fly due to the lockout, and it doesn’t matter how you explain that he had bottom barrel forwards playing on his line for the first month… People refuse to accept it as a legit reason for his lack of success early on and would rather just take a blind shot and call him lazy or say typical Russian. Give credit where credit is due and drop the weak argument folks.

  13. banger60 - Jun 15, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    I just threw up in my mouth, i’m not a fan of Ovie or the Whiner but it had to be one of them, free vodka shots for everyone, i’m buying!

  14. REDSKINSFORLIFE - Jun 15, 2013 at 9:31 PM

    Hey Pitt/Cindy fans….. Suck it.

    • taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:19 AM

      They can suck it long, and suck it hard.

  15. hockeyfan28 - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    Sergei Bobrovsky should have won this he made an entire hockey team relevant again
    with Tavares 2 and Crosby 3 if making an entire team league wide relevant again isn’t
    MVP worthy I don’t know what is

  16. valarmorghuliss - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    The guy who had the best regular season won, the majority and the voters doesn’t give a damn about these stupid ideas about a player being more valuable to his team than someone else.
    Why anyone is shocked by this is beyond me, it’s always been like this, and rightly so.

    Ovy can win the Hart that he earned and go back to failing in the playoffs as usual.

  17. steelgator53 - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:51 PM

    Kunitz and Dupuis being top 10 goal scorers is proof enough Sid should have won the Hart. Ovie is a great player, but doesn’t transform mediocre players.

    • cobra617 - Jun 17, 2013 at 4:43 PM

      Two different positions. Crosby plays center. His job is to create assists for his wingers.
      OV is a winger. A pure goal scorer who can score from anywhere. Crosby’s goals tend to come from very close to the net. This isn’t an indictment, or an attempt to say one is better. It is what it is. They play different positions so you cannot easily compare the two.

      I cannot fathom why Pens fans can think that Crosby deserved the Hart. The Pens were winning without him. They would still have been the #1 or #2 seed in the east even without Crosby. That alone should cease all conversation about Crosby. It doesn’t matter whether he is the best player or not. This isn’t about about being the best player. It is the most VALUABLE to his team. Arguing for anyone other than Crosby is fine IMO. But the fact that the Pens were just fine with him should be all you need to know. Argue Tavares/Bobrovsky/Toews? Ok. Crosby, no? This is more the product of the Pens being a completely stacked team.

  18. pastabelly - Jun 15, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Crosby’s missing of games cost him this one. This is a regular season award and has nothing to do with Cups won. Ovechkin deserved this and neither of them impressed too much in playoffs.

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 2:10 AM

      Crosby could have played the whole season (when was the last time that happened?), it wouldn’t have mattered. The Pens can win without him, so he is NOT the most valuable to his team. As a matter of fact, Sid’s tendancy to over-react to calls, dive and instigate seem to make his team play a lower level of play. This was obvious in both the Bruins series this year and the Flyers series last year. He needs to grow up. He sometimes hurts his team more than helping it.

      Ovechkin usually has good numbers in the playoffs. This season he was doing okay till he broke his foot. It doesn’t really matter though, because he cannot win a cup without some help. You have to have more than one threat on a team to win the cup. Without Ovechkin the Caps do not have anyone that score.

  19. isithockeyseasonyet - Jun 15, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Do I really see penguin fans on here using the phrase ‘sore loser’? Excuse me, but hahahahahaha isn’t that ironic

  20. andyreidisfat - Jun 15, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    Yeah pens fans really need to be quiet, at least the ones on this message board.

    Ovy definitely earned the trophy with his play. He was the number 1 reason his team made the playoffs and I even think by the end of the year he was at least trying in his own zone. (The great one didn’t play much d either, and I am not even going to address Crosby, falling down and acting like you’ve been tripped then complaint to the refs non stop is NOT playing defense).

    All and all I would have voted for Tavares as IMO he was a tiny bit more valuable to his team. Also someone mentioned bob (still smarts we traded him for bryz) and I think he would have been in third for me.

    All in all it was a good year even with the lockout. Here’s to a full season next year.

  21. jimthebear - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    Should have been Patrice Bergeron

  22. taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    The best player in the world.

  23. mikemj - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:19 AM

    This is a travesty. A guy who not only took shifts off but took entire games off wins the Hart? He shouldn’t even have been in the top three. Disgusting.

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 2:13 AM

      You don’t even watch the guy play except when he plays your team, so don’t judge the guy on three games. It just proves you’re lacking in the brain department.

  24. bobhpine - Jun 16, 2013 at 4:11 AM

    I love how Crosby doesn’t win because he missed 24 days with a shattered jaw and Ovechkin DOES win after sleepwalking through the first month because he wanted to be back in Russia.

    The animus for Crosby is a real thing for everyone except his peers. The players voted Crosby the MVP, but the jock sniffing journalists must know better, eh? I guess it’s not surprising. Lunkhead fans are still spewing the same nonsensical trash about Crosby “whining” and “diving” and sportswriters are really just fans masquerading as reporters. Ovechkin needed to play a quarter more of the season catch Crosby in scoring.

    As for the argument that Ovechkin was more important to his team, save it. The Pens and Crosby were never the same after he took that puck to the face. He still got them to a number one seed and was just barely beaten by The Lightning boys in scoring.

    1. Crosby
    2. Tavares
    3. Kane
    4. Datsyuk
    5. OV

    • hockeydon10 - Jun 16, 2013 at 8:28 AM

      They were never the same with Crosby out? They went 8-4. That’s about the same record with him in the lineup. Including the last few when they already had the east wrapped up and could afford to rest players and let off the gas a little bit.

    • bmoreredfury311 - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:47 AM

      I’m sorry, i didn’t understand the point you were trying to make, over all that CRYING!!!

      How did your “awesome” captain do in the playoffs this year? Did you guys make it to the SCF’s?
      Whens the parade? OH that’s right, you got SWEPT!!!
      Don’t worry the NHL will start giving out trophies for whinny GM’s and Cindy so enough. It will be called the “False Since Of Entitlement Award”

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 2:20 AM

      It really hurts you to know that the Pens don’t really need the god Crosby, doesn’t it? You just can’t stand that they can win without the little boy cry baby. Oh, boo hoo. Poor little Sid. He isn’t really all that necessary to his team.

      For Heaven’s sake, grow up and recognize the fact that the Pens have some great players on their team. They, unlike the Caps, are not a one-man show. It is beyond disrespectful to those proven players when all you see is Sidney. He is the only one you give credit to. The Caps on the other hand, are made up of mostly 2nd tier players. Take away Ovechkin and Backstrom and you have nothing. If you knew hockey, you would recognize that fact.

  25. garrison1981 - Jun 16, 2013 at 6:25 AM

    U could play for long time being Datsyuk! Hope wings make some moves to build a powerhouse like before n take back the control! Control comes back this way n it will be crazy! Just wait n c!!

  26. hockeytowninhabitant - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:38 AM

    R u people serious? Crosby would’ve been the exact WRONG choice for the hart. It’s the MVP trophy, given to the player most valuable to his team. Without Ovi the capitals would’ve been last in the eastern conf, if the pens didnt have Crosby they would still make the playoffs and be a contender. This makes ovechkin more valuable. The Lindsay is for best player(which Crosby won, and should’ve) but the hart is for most valuable player, and ovechkin was justified in winning it

    • taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 9:44 AM

      Actually, Crosby getting the Lindsay is a joke. 43rd in goals.

  27. blomfeld - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    “I won’t rule out staying in Russia past this season” … Ovechkin @ Sep 19, 2012

    That’s the spirit NHL ! So only months after threatening his employer and legions of adoring fans with abandonment, you go and present this thoughtless caveman with one of the most coveted awards in all of hockey ? Truly ‘pathetic’ in every conceivable way and most ‘disappointing’ to put it mildly … 😦

    • taintedlombardis - Jun 16, 2013 at 12:40 PM

      When you’re the best, you’re the best.

    • obnoxiousDCfan - Jun 17, 2013 at 1:24 PM

      You do realize that he said that in response to finding out that the NHL was talking about ending long term contracts and restructuring the contracts of players who had existing long-term contracts, right? Players get fined the second they breach a contract, but the NHL can talk about coming in and restructuring your contract because they changed their minds? I don’t think so.

      If my boss came in one day and told me he was thinking about, basically, ripping up the agreement that he and myself signed as to what I was going to work and make and pay me less, I would be pretty angry too. I don’t care how much the people that I work with like me.

    • babykaby - Jun 18, 2013 at 2:26 AM

      Talk about taking something out of context. You are worse than FOX news. Don’t quote him when he says his soul is in DC with the Caps. No just feed your hatred and that of others by pulling something totally out of context without explaining it. You have proven your jerkdom. Congrats.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1822)
  2. P. Kessel (1556)
  3. M. Richards (1318)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1128)
  5. N. Backstrom (1127)