Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos have officially tied for the Rocket Richard Trophy with two excellent 51 goal seasons. This marks the second time in NHL history that the goal scoring award will go to more than one player as the 2003-04 season featured a three-way tie between Jarome Iginla, Rick Nash and Ilya Kovalchuk.
Stamkos scored number 51 with an empty net goal against the Florida Panthers while Crosby scored two goals (and also managed to tie Alex Ovechkin’s second-place points total of 109 by adding three assists) against the New York Islanders. Crosby nearly managed to score a Richard winning hat trick goal with a dazzling 360 degree effort around the Islanders net, but goalie Dwayne Roloson made a splendid save to keep that from happening.
Ovechkin finished just short of the two other goal scorers with 50 goals after being shutout by the Boston Bruins in today’s Game of the Week.
When you consider the excellent years of those three players along with the Art Ross Trophy winning brilliance of Henrik Sedin (who finished the season with an astounding 112 points), it’s been a great year for NHL forwards. Then again, it’s been a nice year for goalies too, as Ryan Miller, Craig Anderson, Ilya Bryzgalov, Marty Brodeur, Jimmy Howard and Evgeni Nabokov have all put up great numbers.
This excellent regular season makes me wonder just how special this playoff run will be. I can assure you that Pro Hockey Talk will take you along for the whole wild ride.