MONTREAL - Whenever you’re mentioned in the same breath as Guy Lafleur
and Wayne Gretzky, you know you’re doing something right. At the NHL Awards tonight in Las Vegas, Evgeni Malkin will have the chance to emulate two giants of the game.
After locking up the Stanley Cup and the Conn Smythe Trophy last week, Malkin will now look to bring his trophy haul up to five, just as only “The Great One” and “The Flower” have done before. With the Art Ross Trophy also already in his back pocket as the NHL’s regular season point leader, Malkin is now only two awards away from turning the trick. The Russian superstar’s final two hurdles are the Hart Trophy as league MVP and the Lester B. Pearson Award as the league’s most valuable player as chosen by his NHL peers.
Lafleur became the first player to ever go 5-for-5 back during the Canadiens record-breaking season in 1976-77 that saw the Habs pile up a league all-time best 132 points on their way to winning their second of four straight Stanley Cups. Lafleur led the NHL with 136 points to win the Art Ross that season before leading all playoff scorers and winning the Conn Smythe Trophy. He then added the Lester B. Pearson and Hart Trophies on award night.
Gretzky’s heavy hardware year came in 1984-85 when he won his second straight Cup, his first Conn Smythe Trophy, his fifth Art Ross and Lester B. Pearson nod and sixth Hart Trophy. Manny Almela is a writer for canadiens.com See also:Habs 1976-77 seasonCanadiens' trophy showroom