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Steven Stamkos named finalist for NHL MVP award

The Tampa Bay Lightning's Steven Stamkos was named one of three finalists for the 2011-12 Hart Memorial Trophy, the NHL's MVP award.

New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin are the other finalists.

Stamkos scored a league-high 60 goals to win his second Maurice Richard Trophy in the past three seasons. He became the first player to reach the 60-goal milestone since 2007-08 (Alex Ovechkin, 65).

Stamkos, 22, tied for the league lead with Phoenix's Radim Vrbata in game-winning goals (12), scored an NHL-record five overtime goals and notched 48 even-strength scores, the most of any player since 1992-93.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted ballots for the Hart Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced June 20, during the 2012 NHL Awards in Las Vegas.

Lundqvist was the anchor of a Rangers club that posted its best regular-season record since the Stanley Cup season of 1993-94 and captured first place in the Eastern Conference. He went 39-18-5 in 62 appearances, setting a career high in wins. Also voted a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, Lundqvist is the first goaltender in contention for the Hart Trophy since 2007, when Vancouver's Roberto Luongo and New Jersey's Martin Brodeur were second and third, respectively.

Malkin captured his second career Art Ross Trophy by leading the NHL with 109 points (50 goals, 59 assists). He registered points in 60 of the 75 games he played in and became the first player since 1995-96 to record five or more points at least four times in one season. Malkin also finished second in the NHL with a career-high 50 goals.

Steven Stamkos named finalist for NHL MVP award 04/27/12 [Last modified: Friday, April 27, 2012 9:11pm]
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