Many people were a bit surprised when Corey Perry’s name was called on Wednesday night as the winner of the Hart Trophy, including Perry himself. Many assumed that it would go to Daniel Sedin, who led the league in scoring and his team to the Stanley Cup finals (not to mention, his twin brother Henrik had won it the previous year). Others thought it might be Martin St. Louis who, with 99 points on the season, led his team to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Once the Anaheim Ducks lost to the Nashville Predators in the first round of the playoffs, a lot of people counted Perry out of the Hart Trophy running. However, his season was filled with triumphs and heroics.
Perry was drafted by the Ducks in 2003 and began playing with them in 2005. He has been a constant contributing factor to all of the Ducks’ success since his inaugural season. His stats have consistently improved throughout his playing career, earning him a regular spot on the Ducks top offensive line.
This season was by far his best to date.
He scored 50 goals throughout the regular season, putting him on a very prestigious list of only 88 NHL players. Nineteen of his fifty goals came in the last sixteen games of the season, when the Ducks were bouncing around in the Western conference standings and weren’t even sure if they were going to make the playoffs. With the help of Perry’s impressive scoring abilities, the Ducks were able to not only make the playoffs, but even clinch home ice advantage.
Perry also scored 11 game-winning goals throughout the season, leading the Ducks to victory in many close-game situations.
On top of Perry’s 50 goals, he also tallied 48 assists throughout the regular season for a total of 98 points, but that’s not the only way he helped the Ducks this season.
On December 28th, Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf, a linemate and best friend of Perry’s, took a puck to the face and incurred multiple nasal fractures, leaving him off the roster for about six weeks.
Until Getzlaf returned, Perry stepped up and assumed the unfilled leadership role and refused to let the team falter until Getzlaf was able to return. The Ducks won 10 of the 14 games that Getzlaf missed.
Corey Perry was a leader on and off the ice this season. Setting personal records and aiding the team when they needed him most, Perry’s Hart nomination was definitely earned and the win was well-deserved.