Hart Memorial Trophy - NHL Trophy For MVP

Hart Memorial Trophy – About The NHL Trophy For Most Valuable Player

Today, we’ll discuss a different NHL trophy that is very significant, valuable, and deserving of respect. The Hart Memorial Trophy is the award we will be talking about today. The most valuable player in the NHL during the regular season receives the Hart Trophy.

After the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association (PHWA) performs a vote, it is awarded to the winner after the conclusion of the regular season. Let’s take a look at the award’s history and how it got to be what it is now before moving on to what the Hart trophy is and what it stands for.

History Of The Hart Memorial Trophy

History of the Hart Trophy

Dr. David Hart gifted the NHL the Hart Memorial Trophy. He was the father of the Montreal Canadiens head coach and general manager, Cecil Hart. In 1923, he gave the trophy to the NHL, and the inaugural NHL player received it during the 1923–24 season.

Because of the level of respect that comes with winning it, the trophy has grown to be one of the most sought-after awards in the NHL over time. The present Hart trophy, which is awarded to athletes for being the most valuable player in the league, is not the authentic version that was first made.

The NHL Hall of Fame museum now houses the original Hart Trophy, which the league retired in 1960. The Hart Trophy is the name of the first award granted by Dr. Hart. The Hart Memorial Trophy, on the other hand, is the award currently awarded to players for being the MVP in a regular season.

Let’s take a closer look at how the cup functions and how the winners of the trophy are determined now that we have completed a brief history of the cup.

About The Hart Memorial Trophy

About the Hart memorial trophy

Nearly all North American sports leagues, including the NBA, NFL, and MBL, award a trophy to their most valuable player each season. But what exactly does the NHL MVP mean?

There are some disagreements on what the acronym MVP should mean. The best overall player in the playoffs, according to one side of the argument, should receive the award. This refers to the player who stands out above the others during the regular season and achieves high offensive, defensive, goal, and point totals.

The issue with this mentality is that it ignores the importance of the team. Here is a scenario to help you comprehend the drawbacks. A good player will undoubtedly accrue more victories, goals, and points if he plays for a team that has other good players to support him and assist the team on offense and defense. Sadly, even though a stronger player is on a poorly organized team, his effort will not be as noticeable as it would be on a better squad.

On the other hand, some people feel that the MVP award ought to go to the player who has had the most impact on a team throughout the regular season. This simply means that a player’s contribution to the team’s level of success can be cited as the reason for the team’s achievement. Hence, it emphasizes how much of a player’s achievement is attributable to their own effort rather than the effort of their team.

However, these differences in how winners are chosen also add to the unpredictability. Thus, how are the recipients of the Hart Memorial trophy chosen?

How Are The Winners Of The Hart Trophy Picked?

Prior to selecting the Hart Memorial Trophy winner for a specific season, a list of nominees is presented. Members of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association compile the rankings (PHWA).

Each member selects five players, and using the 10-7-5-3-1 point system, rates each one’s performance during the regular season using the five numbers listed above. The top three players are then revealed as the finalists after ranking all the nominated players based on the total points amassed.

How Does The NHL Standing Work? is a related article.

The public is not informed of the voting’s winners until the NHL awards presentation following the playoffs. The NHL faced criticism from the public during the 2008 campaign because it began producing Alexander Ovechkin jerseys as the Hart Trophy winner even before the NHL awards ceremony. Ovechkin eventually went on to take home the trophy for that year.

Hart Memorial Winners 

Who has the most hart Trophies

Who Has Won The Most Hart Memorial Trophies?

Wayne Gretzky holds the record for the most Hart Memorial trophies won by an NHL player, just like he does for the Art Trophy. The Great One, as he is frequently called, has won a total of nine Hart trophies for being the season’s MVP. As if that were not enough praise, he won eight of the nine prizes in a row.

As a result, he became the only player to win nine Hart Awards while also winning eight of them in a row. The eight consecutive trophies were won between the 1979–80 and 1986–67 seasons. He won three Stanley Cups while playing center for the Edmonton Oilers during these seasons.

Gretzky spent a significant amount of time with the Oilers during his career, but he didn’t win all of his Hart Trophies with them. Of the nine titles he won, he won eight with the Edmonton Oilers and the ninth with the Los Angeles Kings.

Apart from Gretzky, Gordie Howe, who won six Hart awards over the course of his 26-season career, is the player who comes closest to matching his record.

NHL Team With Most MVP Winners (Updated) 

NHL team with most winners
Winners of the Hart Memorial Trophy up till the end of the 2021-22 season

With 17 Hart trophies awarded to players on their team, the Montreal Canadiens are the NHL team with the most Hart Memorial trophy winners. The Canadiens have won 17 trophies overall, but 13 different players have shared them over the years.

Howie Morenz, who won three Hart trophies with the Canadiens, is the player in the history of the Montreal Canadiens with the most of them. Among the athletes who won two Hart trophies were Guy Lafleur and Jean Béliveau.

Carey Price, the Canadiens’ goaltender during the 2014–15 season, is the most recent NHL player from the team to collect the award.

The Boston Bruins and the Edmonton Oilers both have 13 Hart trophies, which puts them tied for second place, behind the Montreal Canadiens in that category. The 13th trophy of the Oiler was won by McDavid during the 2022-23 season making it his third Hart Trophy. Wayne Gretzky won eight of the Oilers’ 12 awards, making up the majority of their collection.

TeamsNumber of Hart Trophy Winners
Edmonton Oilers 13
Toronto Maple Leafs 3
Tampa Bay Lightnings 2
New Jersey Devils 1
Chicago Blackhawks 7
Montreal Canadiens 17
Pittsburgh Penguins 7
Washington Capitals 3
Anaheim Ducks1
Vancouver Canucks 1
Boston Bruins 13
Colorado Avalanche 2
St Louis Blues 2
Philadelphia Flyers 4
Buffalo Sabres 2
Detroit Red Wings 9
Los Angeles Kings 1
New York Rangers 4
New York Islanders 1
Brooklyn Americans1
Montreal Maroons 2
Ottawa Senators (former)1
New York Americans1
Hamilton Tigers1
Data of the teams with the most number of Hart Trophies. Data by Cleatshub

Hart Memorial Trophy Winners By Year 

Hart Memorial Trophy winners

MVP Player During The 2019-20 Season

Leon Draisaitl, Nathan McKinnon, and Artemi Panarin were the 2019–20 Hart Trophy finalists. Leon Draisaitl ultimately took home the Hart Award for being the season’s MVP.

Leon Draisaitl became the first German NHL player to win the Hart Trophy when he took home the 2019–20 MVP award.

Finalist NHL Team
Leon Draisaitl Edmonton Oilers 
Nathan MacKinnon Colorado Avalanche 
Artemi Panarin New York Rangers 
Data by Cleatshub.com

MVP Player During The 2020-21 Season

Connor McDavid won the MVP award for the 2020–21 season and received his second Hart Memorial trophy. When he was named the season’s MVP during the 2016–17 campaign, the center of the Oilers received his first Hart Trophy.

Finalist NHL Teams
Connor McDavid Edmonton Oilers 
Auston Matthews Toronto Maple Leafs 
Nathan MacKinnon Colorado Avalanche 
Data by Cleatshub.com

MVP Player During The 2021-22 Season

Auston Matthews, the center of the Toronto Maple Leaf, won his first MVP award during the 2021–22 campaign. Together with him on the list of nominees were Igor Shesterkin of the New York Rangers and previous winner Connor McDavid.

Finalist NHL Teams
Auston Matthews Toronto Maple Leafs 
Connor McDavid Edmonton Oilers 
Igor ShesterkinNew York Rangers 
Data by Cleatshub

MVP Player During The 2022-23 Season

During the NHL award ceremony, Connor McDavid was announced as the winner of the Hart Memorial Trophy for the 2022-23 season. He came out as the winner from a list of finalists which consisted of Matthew Tkachuk and David Pastrnak.

Finalist NHL Teams
David Pastrnak Boston Bruins 
Matthew TkachukFlorida Panthers 
Connor McDavid Edmonton Oilers 

Facts About The Hart Memorial Trophy

Here are some of the facts you may not have known about the Hart Memorial trophy. 

  • The first player to win the Hart trophy is Frank Nighbor, a center for the Ottawa Senators
  • The player with the most Hart Memorial Trophy is Wayne Gretzky
  • Also, the player with the most consecutive Hart Trophy is Wayne Gretzky
  • The Hart Trophy has been awarded 99 times since the 1923-24 season.
  • The first goaltender to win the Hart Trophy was Roy Worters during the 1928-29 season
  • Only seven goaltenders have won the Hart Trophy so far
  • The Montreal Canadiens is the NHL franchise with the most Hart trophy winners 
  • Of the 32 teams currently in the NHL, only 19 teams have players who are Hart Trophy winners. The remaining 13 franchises are yet to see a Hart trophy winner come out of their team. 
  • The ice hockey position to record the most Hart trophies is the center position. 
  • Canada has the largest density of players to have won the Hart Trophy, with 73 Canadian winners so far. The nationality of the remaining 15 players is distributed between the USA, Russia, the Czech Republic, and Sweden. 
  • The only two players to win the Hart Trophy by a unanimous decision are Wayne Grekt and Connor McDavid


The significance of the Hart Memorial trophy to the NHL surpasses the fact that it is highly respected. It also shows the skill level of a player to his team not just when working together but also how much of his quota he contributes to his team. 

So far there have only been three inactive players to win the Art Trophy who are yet to be inducted into the NHL Hall of Fame. They are  Tommy Anderson, Al Rollins, and Jose Theodore. 

Thank you for reading.

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