NEW YORK — With the NHL regular season finally over, the league has officially recognized Edmonton captain Connor McDavid as the winner of the 2020-21 Art Ross Trophy and Toronto forward Auston Matthews as the winner of the Maurice (Rocket) Richard Award.
McDavid won the award handed out to the season’s regular-season scoring leader handily, finishing with 105 points (33 goals, 72 assists) in just 56 games.
The next closest player, teammate Leon Draisaitl, was 21 points behind the Oilers star. That’s the largest gap between winner and runner-up since Wayne Gretzky finished 32 points ahead of Brett Hull in 1990-91.
The awards could be officially announced Wednesday following Calgary’s season-ending 6-2 win over Vancouver.
It’s McDavid’s third scoring title, making him just the third player to achieve the feat three times before his 25th birthday along with Gretzky (seven times) and Gordie Howe (three times).
McDavid has accumulated 574 points (195 goals, 379 assists) in 407 games since entering the NHL in 2015-16.
Matthews picked up the award given to the league’s top goal scorer for the first time with 41 goals in 52 games. McDavid’s 33 was second-highest, with Chicago’s Alex DeBrincat third with 32.
Matthews is the first player in Maple Leafs history to capture the Richard Trophy, which first was awarded in 1998-99, as well as the first Toronto player in 75 years to top the NHL in goals. Gaye Stewart had 37 goals in 50 games in 1945-46.
Matthews also led the league with 12 game-winning goals and 222 shots on goal.
Matthews, from Scottsdale, Ariz., is the first American-born player to win the award and the second to lead the league in goals. Keith Tkachuk had 52 in 81 games in 1996-97 with the Phoenix Coyotes.
The league earlier announced that the Vegas Golden Knights tandem of Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner won this season’s William M. Jennings Trophy as the goaltenders who played for the team allowing the fewest goals against.
The Colorado Avalanche captured the Presidents’ Trophy as the team with the best overall record.