Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
Colorado Avalanche star Nathan MacKinnon is named the NHL’s most sportsmanlike player
Colorado Avalanche superstar Nathan MacKinnon has won the 2020 Lady Byng Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s Most Sportsmanlike Player. MacKinnon beat out Auston Matthews of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ryan O’Reilly of the St. Louis Blues for the honor.
MacKinnon finished 2019-20 with 35 goals and 93 points in 69 games while taking only six minor penalties all season. He then went on to dominate the first two rounds of the playoffs, putting up 25 points in only 15 games while setting a record for most consecutive games with a point to start a post season run.
The Lady Byng is voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association and is awarded annually “to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.
MacKinnon ended up with 64 first place votes, while Avalanche rookie Cale Makar recurved three fifth place votes. Despite not being one of the three finalists, Carolina Hurricanes defender finished with the second most first place votes.
MacKinnon is the first Avalanche to win the award since O’Reilly in 2014. Current Avs General Manager Joe Sakic won the award back in 2001.
Here’s one of many times this season that Nathan MacKinnon decided “I’m going to win this game tonight”
— Tom Hunter (@PuckDontLie) July 21, 2020
2019: Aleksander Barkov, Florida Panthers
2018: William Karlsson, Vegas Golden Knights
2017: Johnny Gaudreau, Calgary Flames
2016: Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings
2015: Jiri Hudler, Calgary Flames
2014: Ryan O’Reilly, Colorado Avalanche
2013: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
2012: Brian Campbell, Florida Panthers
2011: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
2010: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
2009: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
2008: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
2007: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
2006: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
2004: Brad Richards, Tampa Bay Lightning
2003: Alexander Mogilny, Toronto Maple Leafs
2002: Ron Francis, Carolina Hurricanes
2001: Joe Sakic, Colorado Avalanche
2000: Pavol Demitra, St. Louis Blues