Connor McDavid, Nikita Kucherov, and Nathan MacKinnon Unveiled as Hart Memorial Trophy Finalists

Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid in 2020
Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid in 2020. Photo by Canadian Press/Shutterstock (10710533m)

The Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid, Tampa Bay Lightning’s Nikita Kucherov, and Colorado Avalanche’s Nathan MacKinnon were unveiled on Tuesday as finalists for the 2023-24 Hart Memorial Trophy.

The Hart Memorial Trophy is essentially the MVP award in the NHL, given to a player who was considered the most valuable to his team in the past season. The winner is determined based on votes from the Professional Hockey Writers Association. This year’s NHL awards show is scheduled to take place on June 27, when we’ll find out whether McDavid, Kucherov, or MacKinnon will take home the award.

Connor McDavid, who won the Hart Memorial Trophy on three previous occasions, has built another strong case this season. While his goal tally dropped down compared to previous campaigns, he managed to become only the fourth player in NHL history to reach 100 assists in a single season.  McDavid had 132 points in 2023-24 while helping the Oilers finish second in the Pacific Division.

Nikita Kucherov finished the season with 144 points while equaling McDavid’s feat of having a century of assists in a single season. He previously won the Hart Memorial Trophy back in 2019. Kucherov and Lightning finished fourth in the Atlantic Division and were later eliminated in the Stanley Cup playoffs by the Florida Panthers.

Finally, Nathan MacKinnon is looking to win his first Hart Memorial Trophy despite this being the fourth time he was named finalist for the award. In 2023-24, MacKinnon played in all 82 games while having career-highs in goals (51), assists (89), and points (140). MacKinnon led the Avalanche to third place in the Central Division.

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