Evgeni Malkin

Malkin becomes fourth Penguin to win Hart Trophy


For the first time in his career, Evgeni Malkin is the Hart Trophy winner. Pittsburgh’s star forward beat out two other finalists, Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist and Lightning sniper Steven Stamkos, for the award that was presented Wednesday in Las Vegas.

The Hart Trophy is voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association and given to the “player adjudged most valuable to his team.”

Malkin placed first on 144 of the 149 ballots cast. He finished with a score of 1,473 in the voting, well above Stamkos’ 598 points. Lundqvist finished third with 556 points.

Malkin, 25, scored 50 goals and added 59 assists for the Penguins in 2011-12. His 109 points also earned him the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL’s leading scorer.

Malkin becomes the fourth Penguin to win the Hart, joining Mario Lemieux (1988, 1993, 1996), Jaromir Jagr (1999) and Sidney Crosby (2007).

Malkin reacts

“It’s a special day to me,” Malkin said. “I hope it’s not the last one I’ll win.”

During his acceptance speech, Malkin thanked former Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar – and with good reason. Malkin stayed at Gonchar’s home, but perhaps most importantly, the veteran Russian player often acted as a translator for the young star. Malkin said that he’s gradually becoming more comfortable with the language and spotlight in the U.S.

“Every year I’m a little bit more comfortable,” Malkin said. “I learn more English, I watch TV and have more friends in Pittsburgh.”

Ultimately, his game speaks for itself, but another impressive set of hardware says plenty more.

Recent winners:

2006 – Joe Thornton (Boston/San Jose)
2007 – Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh)
2008 – Alex Ovechkin (Washington)
2009 – Alex Ovechkin (Washington)
2010 – Henrik Sedin (Vancouver)
2011 – Corey Perry (Anaheim)

Derek Roy continues his career in Switzerland

Alex Tanguay, Derek Roy
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Derek Roy will continue his pro career overseas, as he has signed a contract with Bern in the Swiss League.

Roy attended training camp on a professional tryout with the Washington Capitals, but he was unable to claim a spot on their roster.

The 32-year-old had some great years in the NHL, but since the 2011-12 season Roy had suited up for six different teams (excluding his PTO with the Caps).

His best season came in 2007-08 when he scored 32 goals and 81 points in 78 games with the Buffalo Sabres.

Roy will leave the NHL with 189 goals and 524 points in 738 career games.

He will join former NHLers Cory Conacher, Andrew Ebbett, Chuck Kobasew, Simon Moser and Sean Bergenheim in Bern.


Sabres place Lehner on IR; Recall Lieuwen

Connor Brown, Robin Lehner

They’re just one game into their regular season, but the Buffalo Sabres have already had to shift things around in their crease.

The Sabres announced that they have placed starting goaltender Robin Lehner on injured reserve after he was knocked out of Thursday’s game with a lower-body injury.

In a corresponding move, the club has recalled Nathan Lieuwen from their AHL affiliate in Rochester.

The 24-year-old didn’t play in the NHL last season, but he did have a 1-4-0 record with a 2.98 goals-against-average and a .906 save percentage in seven games during the 2013-14 season.

Lieuwen was Buffalo’s sixth round pick, 167th overall, in the 2011 draft.

The Sabres also announced that they have loaned defenseman Jake McCabe and goaltender Linus Ullmark to the Rochester Americans (AHL).

McCabe was a healthy scratch in Thursday’s game against Ottawa, while Ullmark is being activated off I.R. after having double hip surgery during the off-season.