The National Hockey League announced today the finalists for the Hart Memorial Trophy, given annually to the player judged to be the most valuable to his team, naming Stars captain Jamie Benn. Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Patrick Kane (Chicago Blackhawks) were also named finalists. The winner is selected in a poll of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association (PHWA) in all NHL cities at the end of the regular season.
Yesterday, Benn was selected as a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award, given annually to the "Most Outstanding Player" in the NHL, as voted by fellow members of the NHLPA. Earlier in the season, he was selected to participate in the 2016 NHL All-Star Game, his second career All-Star appearance.
Benn, 26, led the Stars with 89 points (41-48=89) in 82 regular-season games, which led the team and was second in the League. He also tied for second in the NHL in power play goals (17) and ranked third in goals (41), posting new career highs in each category. Benn appeared in all 82 games during the regular season, marking the second consecutive season and the third time in his career that he's appeared in all 82 contests.
He recorded a season-long eight-game point streak (8-6=14) from Nov. 12 - 28, and posted a season-high four-point outing (1-3=4) in a 6-5 win on Dec. 8 vs. Carolina. The Stars captain appeared in his 500th career NHL contest on March 22 at Chicago, while he recorded an assist (0-1=1) on Dec. 15 at Columbus to celebrate the 400th point of his NHL career. Benn was named the NHL's First Star for the month of October after posting nine goals and 17 points (9-8=17) in 11 games during the opening month of the season, while he also earned the First Star of the Week award for the week ending Nov. 29 after tallying six points (4-2=6) in three games.
The captain currently leads the NHL in postseason scoring with 14 points (5-9=14) along with sharing first in assists (9) and tied for fifth in goals (5). Benn has points in eight of his 10 games during the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs and recorded a career-long six-game postseason point streak (4-6=10) from April 14 - 24, which is tied with Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin (3-6=9) and St. Louis' Jaden Schwartz (3-4=7) for the longest point streak this postseason. The captain's six-game postseason point streak was the longest by a Dallas Stars player since 2008, when Brenden Morrow also registered points in six consecutive playoff games (4-2=6) from May 2 - May 14, 2008. In his career, he now has points in 13 of 16 career playoff contests, tallying 19 postseason points (9-10=19).
The Victoria, B.C. native was selected by Dallas in the fifth round (129th overall) in the 2007 NHL Draft, Benn has amassed 448 points (192-256=448) in 508 career regular-season games, all as a member of the Stars.