The National Hockey League announced today that Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane is one of three finalists for the 2016 Hart Memorial Trophy, given annually to the player who is most valuable to his team during the regular season. Forwards Jamie Benn (Dallas) and Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh) were also named finalists.
Kane won the 2016 Art Ross Trophy as the league’s leading scorer, finishing the 2015-16 regular season with a career-high 106 points. It marked the first time in NHL history that a player born in the United States led the league in scoring.
The Buffalo native recorded career highs in goals (46) and assists (60) while skating in all 82 games of his ninth NHL season. His record-setting season included a franchise-best 26-game point streak (16G, 24A) from Oct. 17-Dec. 13. It was the longest streak by an American-born player, surpassing 18-game streaks by Eddie Olczyk (1989-90) and Phil Kessel (2008-09).
Kane, 27, also enjoyed a career-best seven-game goal streak from Nov. 2-15. The 2015-16 campaign saw Kane log 27 multi-point games and his first two regular-season hat tricks (Jan. 15 at TOR and April 3 vs. BOS). His 106 points are the most by a Blackhawks player since Jeremy Roenick scored 107 in 1993-94 and the 8th-most by a player in a season in franchise history.
A three-time Stanley Cup champion, Kane finished the 2015-16 regular season among Blackhawks franchise leaders in points (6th, 663), assists (6th, 412) and goals (T-10th, 251). The first-overall pick in the 2007 NHL Draft, he has played 658 career games, all with Chicago. In addition to being a five-time NHL All-Star, Kane won the 2013 Conn Smythe Trophy, the 2008 Calder Memorial Trophy and a silver medal with Team USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Should Kane win the Hart Trophy, he would be the first Chicago Blackhawks player to win since forward Stan Mikita won his second of two straight such awards in 1968. Before Mikita’s two straight wins, forward Bobby Hull won the Hart Trophy two straight years in 1965 and 1966. Goalie Al Rollins was the first Blackhawks player to win the Hart Trophy, taking home the award in 1954.
The winner of the 2016 Hart Memorial Trophy will be announced during the NHL Awards on June 22 in Las Vegas. The award is selected by a poll of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association at the end of the regular season.