Kane first American to win NHL scoring title
The NHL regular season concluded Sunday with Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane capturing his first-career Art Ross Trophy as the league’s scoring champion, making him the first United States-born player to earn that honor.
Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin claimed his sixth career Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy as the NHL’s goal-scoring leader, and the Anaheim Ducks tandem of Frederik Andersen and John Gibson won the William M. Jennings Trophy as the goaltenders who played at least 25 games for the club allowing the fewest goals.
Kane finished the season with a career-high 46 goals, 60 assists and 106 points, running away with the title by besting the closest two scorers, Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn (89 points) and Pittsburgh Penguins forward Sidney Crosby (85 points) by a wide margin.
“It is an honor being the first American to win the scoring title as there have been so many great hockey players from the United States in the NHL,” Kane said. “I take a lot of pride in that, but I also take a lot of pride in doing it with the Chicago Blackhawks. I owe a lot to my teammates, coaches and the organization, as I couldn’t have done this without them.
“This has been a special season, but we still have a lot to accomplish as a team, and I look forward to another long run in the Stanley Cup playoffs.”
Ovechkin scored 50 goals to capture his fourth consecutive “Rocket” Richard Trophy. Ovechkin, who finished ahead of Kane (46) and Benn (41) for the award, became the third player in NHL history to total seven or more 50-goal seasons, following Mike Bossy and Wayne Gretzky, who each had nine. He also became the third player in league history to post 30-plus goals in each of his first 11 seasons, joining Mike Gartner (15) and Gretzky (13).
Andersen and Gibson are the first Anaheim goaltenders to claim the Jennings Trophy. Andersen made 43 appearances in the Ducks’ goal, while Gibson appeared in 40 games. Andersen went 17-1-2 in his final 22 outings dating to Jan. 13, and Gibson finished second in the NHL with a 2.07 goals-against average.