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Several NHL Awards won as Regular Season ends

Posted on April 9, 2012 at 6:05 PM

Steven Stamkos celebrates his 60th goal of the season

The 2011-12 NHL regular season came to an end on Apr. 7 after 1,230 games with all 30 teams seeing action on the same day for just the fourth time in league history. With the end of the regular season came the announcement of several trophy winners.

The season’s overall leading scorer was Russian center Evgeni Malkin of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Malkin picked up the Art Ross Trophy for the second time in his career while center Steven Stamkos won the Maurice Richard Trophy for the second time in his career by scoring the most goals during the season. Goaltenders Jaroslav Halak and Brian Elliott of the St. Louis Blues won the William Jennings Trophy which is awarded to the goaltenders on the club which allowed the least goals against.

Malkin led the league with 109 points which he racked up by scoring 50 goals and 59 assists. Stamkos was second in overall scoring with 60 goals and 37 assists for 97 points. Right winger Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers was third with 28 goals and 65 assists for 93 points. Malkin also won the award in the 2008-09 season and becomes the third Penguin to win the award at least twice in his career.

Mario Lemieux led the league in scoring on six occasions while Jaromir Jagr achieved the feat five times. Malkin played a total of 75 games in the 82-game schedule and scored points in 60 of them, which represents 80 per cent. He scored at least five points in a game four times this season, becoming the first player to do so since the 1995-96 season. His 50 goals were good for second in the league, 10 behind Stamkos. He also led the NHL with a total of 339 shots on net. 

Stamkos’ 60 goals earned him the Maurice Richard Trophy for the second time after winning it previously in 2009-10. He had 10 more goals than Malkin and 19 more than third place finisher right winger Marian Gaborik of the New York Rangers, who had 41. Stamkos managed to score his 60th goal of the season in the final game during an overtime win in Winnipeg.

He’s the first NHL player to reach the 60-goal plateau since Alexander Ovechkin netted 65 in 2007-08. Stamkos and Radim Vrbata of the Phoenix Coyotes each had 12-game winning goals and Stamkos five overtime markers were also tops in the league. The 48 even-strength goals by Stamkos were the most in the league since the 1992-93 season.

Goaltenders Halak and Elliott led the St. Louis blues to the best defensive record in the NHL by allowing just 165 goals against in 82 games. It was the second time the Blues have captured the award and the first time each for Halak and Elliott. The Blues also won the award in the 1999-2000 season. The pair also led the league with a combined 15 shutouts which equalled the modern day record set by Chicago Blackhawks rookie Tony Esposito in 1969-70.

Elliott finished the season with nine shutouts while Halak added six. Jonathan Quick of the Los Angeles Kings led the league with 10 shutouts. The 15 shutouts by St. Louis broke the club’s previous mark of 13 which was set in 1968-69 by Jacques Plante and Glenn Hall. Halak and Elliott became the first pair of goalies ever to earn at least six shutouts each on the same team in the same NHL season.

Elliott’s goals-against-average of 1.56 goals per game was the best in the league as was his saver percentage of 94 per cent. His nine shutouts set a new club record and his three straight shutouts equaled the team record which was set in 1988-89 by Greg Millen.

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