2021 NHL Awards: McDavid wins Art Ross, Matthews gets Maurice Richard

With the North Division spillover finally finished, the 2020-21 NHL regular season concluded on Wednesday. With that, quite a few 2021 NHL Awards became official — even if you could see the winners coming a mile away.

With 105 points (in 56 games!), Connor McDavid won the 2021 Art Ross Trophy. Auston Matthews locked up the 2021 Maurice Richard Trophy with 41 goals.

[Also now official: the 2021 NHL Draft Lottery odds]

2021 NHL Awards: McDavid wins Art Ross

McDavid won the Art Ross Trophy by a mile, and he didn’t “settle” for 100 points during this abbreviated season. McDavid’s teammate Leon Draisaitl finished a distant second in the Art Ross race with 84 points, 21 behind the 105 for number 97.

The NHL shared some more information about McDavid’s incredible, Art-Ross-winning year, and his 105-point season. In collecting his third Art Ross Trophy, McDavid sits with all-time greats, including Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky:

He became the ninth player in NHL history to claim the award at least three times as well as the third to achieve the feat prior to his 25th birthday, following Wayne Gretzky (5x) and Gordie Howe (3x). McDavid’s 21-point gap over the runner-up was the largest by an NHL scoring champion since 1990-91, when Gretzky (41-122—163 in 78 GP w/ LAK) finished 32 points ahead of Brett Hull (86-45—131 in 78 GP w/ STL).

McDavid, who also topped the League in assists (72), power-play assists (28) and power-play points (37), factored on 57.38 percent of Edmonton’s 183 total goals (excluding the shootout) – the highest single-season percentage in NHL history, ahead of Mario Lemieux in 1988-89 (57.35% w/ PIT). He also posted a League-leading 1.88 points per game – the most by any player since 1995-96, when Lemieux averaged 2.30 (69-92—161 in 70 GP w/ PIT).

Auston Matthews officially wins the 2021 Maurice Richard Trophy

Auston Matthews generated an impressive margin for his Maurice Richard Trophy, too. He scored 41 goals to take it, eight more than second-place McDavid (33).

Matthews also scored 12 game-winning goals, which is pretty absurd in a shortened season. (Especially with some injury issues.)

More context from the league:

Matthews, who also paced the League with 12 game-winning goals and 222 shots on goal, accounted for 22.0 percent of Toronto’s 186 total goals (excluding the shootout) – the highest single-season percentage by an NHL player since 2014-15 (Ovechkin: 22.4% w/ WSH) and the best single-season mark by a Maple Leafs player in the expansion era (since 1967-68). His 0.79 goals per game also was the best such average by any player since 2007-08 (Ovechkin: 0.79) as well as the highest single-season mark in franchise history (minimum: 50 GP).

More to come, and others that have been confirmed

This rounds out some of the bottom-line 2021 NHL Awards. Earlier, the league confirmed that the Colorado Avalanche won the 2021 Presidents’ Trophy, while Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner combined to win the 2021 William M. Jennings Trophy.

Going forward, there are the more “subjective” 2021 NHL Awards. As you can see from Our Line Starts, McDavid is the clear favorite to win the Hart Trophy. There’s also some interesting room for debate for the Norris, Selke, GM of the Year, Jack Adams, and so on.

(It will be surprising to see anyone other than Kirill Kaprizov win the Calder Trophy, though.)

You can watch Connor McDavid and the Oilers begin their playoff run vs. the Jets on Wednesday.

Jets-Oilers stream coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET on NBCSN. You can watch the game online and on the NBC Sports app by clicking here.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

Scroll Down For:

    Blackhawks F Katchouk will be sidelined by ankle sprain

    blackhawks
    Harry How/Getty Images
    13 Comments

    CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced Sunday.

    The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.

    The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.

    The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.

    Ducks’ Urho Vaakanainen crashes into boards, leaves on stretcher

    Getty Images
    3 Comments

    ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.

    The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.

    The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.

    Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.

    The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.

    Lightning donate $2 million to Hurricane Ian relief efforts

    tampa bay lightning
    Scott Audette/Getty Images
    2 Comments

    TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.

    The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.

    “This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”

    Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.

    Maple Leafs sign defenseman Rasmus Sandin to 2-year deal

    Rasmus Sandin
    Julian Avram/Getty Images
    2 Comments

    TORONTO — Rasmus Sandin has signed a two-year, $2.8 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club announced on Thursday.

    The 22-year-old from Sweden was the 29th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Sandin had 16 points in 51 games with Toronto last season. He’s played in 88 career regular-season games, with six goals and 22 assists, and has one goal in five playoff games.

    “Got a great set of tools,” fellow defenseman Jake Muzzin said. “With experience, I think they’re only going to get better.”

    The signing comes as the Leafs’ blueliners been hit hard by injuries. Muzzin has been dealing with a back issue, and Timothy Liljegren recently had surgery for a hernia.

    Toronto then lost Jamie Benn (groin) and Carl Dahlstrom (shoulder) in Wednesday’s 3-0 preseason victory over the Montreal Canadiens, pressing forwards Calle Jarnkrok and Alexander Kerfoot into defensive roles for two periods.