ARLINGTON, Va. – The National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) announced today that Washington Capitals captain and left wing Alex Ovechkin
is one of three finalists for the Ted Lindsay Award, which is presented annually to the player judged as the most outstanding player in the NHL, as voted by fellow members of the NHLPA. Ovechkin, who has won the last two NHLPA’s “Most Outstanding Player” awards and the past two Hart Trophies, could join Guy Lafleur (1975-78) and Wayne Gretzky (1981-85) as the only players to ever win it three years in a row. Ovechkin is joined by Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin as the three finalists.
On April 29, 2010, the Ted Lindsay Award was introduced, and it remains the only award voted on by the players themselves, carrying on the tradition established by the Lester B. Pearson Award. The Award honors Ted Lindsay, an All-Star forward known for his skill, tenacity, leadership and his role in establishing the original Players' Association.
The winner will be announced Wednesday, June 23, during the 2010 NHL Awards that will be broadcast live from the Pearl Concert Theater inside the Palms Hotel Las Vegas on VERSUS in the United States and on CBC in Canada.
Ovechkin led the NHL in points per game (1.51) and goals per game (0.69). He finished tied for second in the NHL in points (109) and was one shy of the league lead in goals (50) despite missing 10 games. He led all NHL forwards and was second in the league in plus/minus rating (+45), trailing only teammate Jeff Schultz
. Ovechkin led the league in shots (368) and even-strength goals (37).
He had the fourth-best single-season point total in Capitals history and the franchise’s 10th 50-goal season. His plus/minus rating ranks second in Capitals history.
Named captain Jan. 5, Ovechkin led the Capitals to a 30-4-7 record from that point on as Washington captured its first Presidents’ Trophy for the best record in the league. The Capitals became just the fourth franchise in NHL history to post a 120-point season, finishing 54-15-13 (121 points) and winning a third consecutive Southeast Division title.
Ovechkin – who could become the first player in league history to be named to the NHL First All-Star Team in each of his first five seasons in the league – has scored 269 career goals, more in his first five seasons than any player besides Gretzky, Mike Bossy and Mario Lemieux.