NEW YORK, N.Y. - Tampa Bay sniper Steven Stamkos, New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist and Pittsburgh Penguins centre Evgeni Malkin have been named finalists for the Hart Trophy.
The award is given annually to the NHL's most valuable player.
The winner will be announced June 20 at the NHL awards banquet in Las Vegas. It is decided in voting conducted by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.
Stamkos became the first player to score 60 goals in a season since 2007-'08 when Washington's Alex Ovechkin had 65. The 22-year-old finished with 60 goals and 37 assists, scored an NHL-record five overtime goals and had a league-high 48 even-strength goals, the most of any player since 1992-'93.
Lundqvist led New York to the top of the Eastern Conference standings with a 39-18-5 record in 62 appearances. The 39 regular-season wins were a career high and Lundqvist also finished tied for third overall in shutouts shutouts (eight), fourth in goals-against average (1.97) and save percentage (.930).
Lundqvist is also a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, given annually to the NHL's top goaltender.
Malkin captured his second career Art Ross Trophy as the league's scoring leader with 109 points (50 goals, 59 assists). He also finished second in the NHL with a career-high 50 goals and took a league-high 339 shots on goal.
Malkin is a Hart finalist for the third time, having finished second to Ovechkin in 2008 and 2009.