Draisaitl, MacKinnon and Panarin named finalists for Ted Lindsay Award

By WGR 550 SportsRadio

The National Hockey League announced its first round of award finalists on Tuesday with the three candidates for the Ted Lindsay Award. The Ted Lindsay Award is awarded every year to the NHL's most outstanding player in the regular season as voted upon by members of the NHL Players' Association.

This year's three finalists are Edmonton Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl, Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon and New York Rangers forward Artemi Panarin.

The finalists for the Ted Lindsay Award are in!This year it's Leon Draisaitl, Nathan Mackinnon (@Mackinnon9) and @artemiypanarin who are up for most outstanding player, as voted by the @NHLPA.MORE: https://t.co/XE9sKjmwTr pic.twitter.com/Ep8yEKAGwd

— NHL (@NHL) July 14, 2020

Draisaitl finished the 2019-20 season as the league's top scorer with 110 points (43+67) in 71 games played and came away with the Art Ross Trophy. The 24-year-old not only scored the most points in the league this season, but he also registered the most assists. Draisaitl was also able to add five more points to his total from last season (105 points) in 11 fewer games, and was on pace to finish the 2019-20 season with 50 goals and 77 assists for 127 points in 82 games if the year was not shortened due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Overall, the Oilers went on to finish the 2019-20 season with a 37-25-9 record with 83 points, and they ended up as the fifth-seed in the Western Conference Qualifying Round and will take on the Chicago Blackhawks.

MacKinnon ended up leading the Avalanche this season in scoring with 35 goals and 58 assists for 93 points in 69 games. The 24-year-old was on pace to set career-highs in every scoring statistic this season, and was expected to surpass the 100-point mark for the first time in his career.

Colorado had another stellar season in the Western Conference with a 42-20-8 record in 70 games and finished second in the Central Division. The Avalanche will be playing in the seeding round-robin tournament during the Stanley Cup Qualifying Round to determine the seeding for the top-four teams in the Western Conference.

As for Panarin, the 28-year-old winger had a dynamic first season in New York by setting career-highs in goals (32), assists (63) and points (95) in 69 games played. Panarin was on pace to score 112 points this season, while also scoring 38 goals and registering 74 assists. He led the Rangers in scoring this year after signing a massive seven-year contract this past offseason worth $81.5 million.

The Rangers did not have the greatest of seasons with a 37-28-5 record and 79 points, which was good for just sixth place in the Metropolitan Division. However, given the circumstances of the 24-team Return To Play format this summer, the Rangers were able to qualify for the play-in round and will face the seventh-seeded Carolina Hurricanes in the best-of-five series.

An announcement of the winner of the Ted Lindsay Award will come at a later date.

Here is the list of other award finalists to be named in the coming days:
  • Wednesday, July 15: Jack Adams Award, Calder Trophy
  • Thursday, July 16: Lady Byng Trophy, Masterton Trophy
  • Friday, July 17: Willie O’Ree Award, Vezina Trophy
  • Monday, July 20: Norris Trophy, Selke Trophy
  • Tuesday, July 21: Hart Trophy