Thursday, June 21, 2012
Last night Evgeni Malkin picked up his second Art Ross Trophy as the 2011-12 NHL scoring champion, as his 109 points were 12 more than his next closest pursuer and made him the only player in the league to surpass 100.
His season was also recognized with the Ted Lindsay Award (previously the Lester Pearson Award) as the NHL's Most Outstanding Player as voted by his peers, the members of the NHL Players Association.
Malkin's hat trick of awards was capped off by by receiving the Hart Trophy as the NHL's Most Valuable Player, only the third Russian to win the NHL's most prestigious award after Sergei Fedorov and Alexander Ovechkin. It was also the fourth time a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins won the award, following Mario Lemieux (1988, 1993 and 1996), Jaromir Jagr (1999) and Sidney Crosby (2007).
Malkin poses with his Lindsay, Ross and Hart trophies
His hoard of trophies last night were in addition to his participation in the 2012 NHL All-Star Game, being named to the NHL First All-Star Team, being named the Penguins MVP and the Kharlamov Trophy as the Best Russian Player in the NHL.
His memorable evening capped off a terrific month for Malkin, who won a gold medal at the 2012 IIHF World Championships exactly one month ago, where he was the tournament's leading scorer with 11 goals and 19 points in 10 games, which earned him a place on the tournament's All-Star Team and the award for both the tournament's Best Forward and Most Valuable Player. He was only the second player to lead both the NHL and World Championships in scoring in the same season after Wayne Gretzky in 1982.
Malkin celebrating Russia's 2012 world championship
Today's featured jersey is a 2011-12 Pittsburgh Penguins Evgeni Malkin jersey as worn on October 13, 2011 when both the Penguins and Washington Capitals wore patches featuring the logo of the Russian team Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, whose plane crashed five weeks earlier, killing 44 of the 45 people on board, including the entire team and it's staff.
The idea to raise money for the families left behind originated with Malkin, who went to Penguins general manager Ray Shero to ask for the team's help in raising money.
"We were born in Russia. We know these guys," Malkin said. "We (played) with these guys on teams, the national team. We need to help their families because those are (our) guys." The Capitals were brought into the plan thanks to their Russian captain Ovechkin. "I know Alex. We talked to him," Malkin said. "We had ideas to sell jerseys Oct. 13 and do an auction."
"We compete against each other hard on the ice, but off the ice we all are part of one big hockey family," Shero said. "Many of our players had friends on the Lokomotiv team. All of us in hockey were touched by this tragic loss. We just thought this game was a unique opportunity for our two teams to work together to raise money for the children and families of the players, coaches and staff who lost their lives."
Mario Lemieux drops the ceremonial puck between Malkin and Ovechkin prior to the game where the Penguins and Capitals wore patches honoring the Lokomotiv victims
Following the game, the jerseys were then auctioned off on NHL.com with the proceeds given to the children and families of the Lokomotiv players. Malkin's jersey sold for $4,020, slightly behind Sidney Crosby's $4,097, while Ovechkin topped the list at $5,501 with teammate and fellow Russian Alexander Semin reaching $3,124.
Today's video section begins with "Evergene" Malkin accepting his Lindsay Award from Ted Lindsay himself.
Next, "Evgani" getting a chance to show his sense of humor concerning his command of English as he accepts his Hart Trophy as league MVP.
Finally, a video segment on the efforts to raise money by the Penguins organization for the families of the Lokomotiv disaster.