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End of NHL regular season finalizes Richard, Jennings, Presidents’ Trophies

The NHL has canceled the remainder of the 2019-2020 regular season and will advance directly to the playoffs in its attempt to restart play. We break down what this means for various postseason awards.

A detailed view of the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy is seen positioned on a table at the 2018 NHL Awards at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on June 20, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images

The National Hockey League is officially ending the 2019-2020 regular season. Commissioner Gary Bettman announced on Tuesday that the league will move straight to the playoffs as it looks to restart during the Covid-19 pandemic. The league has not decided exactly when the 24-team playoff will get started, but it looks to be sometime in mid-to-late July at the earliest.

The close of the regular season means we have some finality to season-long awards. Most individual awards require some kind of voting process, but there are a handful that are based on purely statistical performance.

The Rocket Richard Trophy, awarded to the NHL’s top goal scorer, has a tie this year. Washington Capitals left winger Alex Ovechkin and Boston Bruins right winger David Pastrnak each finishing the season with a league-leading 48 goals. The William Jennings Trophy goes to Bruins goalkeeper Tuukka Rask. He finished the season giving up 2.12 goals against per game. He finished .03 ahead of St. Louis Blues goalkeeper Jake Allen, although theoretically Allen would not have qualified because he played in 24 games and the award requires 25 games.

We also now know the Presidents Trophy winner. It goes to the team that finishes the regular season with the best overall record. The Boston Bruins claim it with 100 points after finishing the abbreviated season 44-26 with 12 overtime losses.

Finally, teams will puff their chests in claiming division titles now that the standings are final for the season. The Bruins and Capitals claimed the Atlantic and Metropolitans divisions in the Eastern Conference. The Blues and Vegas Golden Knights claimed the Central and Pacific divisions in the Western Conference.