Kucherov was announced as a finalist for the 2018-19 Hart Memorial Trophy on Sunday, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reports. No surprise here as the 25-year-old racked up a ridiculous 128 points, 12 more than any other player. That's also the highest point total for any NHL skater since the turn of the century. Kucherov was wildly regarded as the Hart frontrunner for most of the season and he's expected to take home the hardware for the first time this offseason.
Kucherov has been named a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award by the NHL Players Association, reports TSN.ca. The award is given to the NHL's most outstanding player as voted on by his peers. Kucherov, whose disappointing playoff performance has him headed to the IIHF World Championships and not playing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, put up the highest point total (128) since Mario Lemieux's 161 back in 1995-96. He's up against Connor McDavid and Patrick Kane.
Kucherov is planning on representing Team Russia at the upcoming IIHF World Championship, Joe Smith of The Athletic reports. Kucherov's record-setting season ended on a low note when Tampa Bay was bounced from the playoffs by Columbus via a first-round sweep Tuesday, so he'll hope to start washing that foul taste from his mouth by helping his native Russia take home gold at the World Championship. The 25-year-old should be valued as a top-three pick in all fantasy formats heading into the 2019-20 campaign.
Kucherov notched two assists, one on the power play, in Tuesday's 7-3 loss to the Blue Jackets in Game 4 of their first-round series. After being held scoreless in the first two games and then suspended for the third, the NHL's scoring champ finally showed up, although Kucherov's efforts were too little, too late for the Bolts. The 25-year-old has put together back-to-back 100-point campaigns, and while the ending of this season was hugely disappointing, he'll still be the centerpiece of one of the most dangerous offenses in the NHL in 2019-20.
Kucherov (suspension) has served his one-game ban and is available for Tuesday's crucial Game 4 clash with Columbus. Without Kucherov, the Lightning were only able to put up one goal in Game 3. The world-class winger will be critical to the club's chances of coming back from a 3-0 series deficit. Look for the Russian to slot back into his second-line role, in addition to retaking his spot on the top power-play unit.
Last 7 Games
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