NEW YORK - A veteran captain and two of the NHL's young guns were named finalists for the Hart Trophy on Tuesday.
Calgary Flames winger Jarome Iginla, Pittsburgh Penguins centre Evgeni Malkin and Washington Capitals winger Alex Ovechkin are up for the award, given to the player judged to be the most valuable to his team.
Iginla recorded his second career 50-goal season and had a career-best 98 points in 82 games. It's the third time the Calgary captain has been a Hart finalist. He finished second in 2002 and 2004.
Iginla, a 30-year-old Edmonton native, led the Flames in goals, assists, points, plus-minus (+27), power-play goals (15), game-winning goals (nine) and shots (338).
Ovechkin and Malkin are both first-time nominees for the Hart.
Ovechkin captured the Art Ross Trophy as NHL scoring leader and Maurice Richard Trophy as the league's top goalscorer after recording 65 goals and 112 points in 82 games. The 22-year-old from Moscow led all players in power-play goals (22) and game-winning goals (11).
Ovechkin also set the single-season NHL record for goals by a left-winger, surpassing Luc Robitaille's 63 with Los Angeles in 1992-93, and his 65 goals were the most by an NHL player since Mario Lemieux scored 69 goals in 1995-96.
Malkin, a 21-year-old native of Magnitogorsk, Russia, finished second to Ovechkin with 106 points (47-59) in 82 games. Malkin was the NHL's leading scorer after Dec. 31, tallying 65 points (32-33) in 44 games.
Members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association submitted ballots for the Hart Trophy at the end of the regular season. The winner will be announced June 12 at the NHL awards show in Toronto.
The NHL will announce the finalists for the Jack Adams Award for outstanding coach on Wednesday.