NHL Betting: Back-to-Back Hart Trophy Winners Since 1980

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Detroit Red Wings goalie Dominik Hasek (39) of the Czech Republic skates off the ice after third period hockey action in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals in Detroit, Saturday, May 24, 2008.
(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Gary Pearson @newagejourno Aug 05, 2022, 1:12 PM
  • Only three players since 1980 have won the Hart Trophy in successive seasons
  • Alexander Ovechkin is the only active player who has won the Hart Trophy back to back
  • Dominik Hasek is the only goaltender who has won consecutive Hart Trophies

The Hart Trophy is arguably the hardest individual honor to win in the NHL, so it is no surprise  only three players have won it in successive seasons since 1980. 

NHL odds detailing the 2022-23 Hart Trophy candidates were released after the Colorado Avalanche won the Stanley Cup. The extended list of frontrunners includes one active player who won the acclaimed honor in consecutive seasons, Alexander Ovechkin.

The Great 8 accomplished the fanciful feat in 2008 and 2009, joining one of the NHL’s most exclusive lists. 

The three names etched on the back-to-back Hart Trophies list mirror the number of players in two other distinguished clubs: players who’ve won the Hart Trophy more than twice since 1980 and winners of the Conn Smythe and Hart Trophy in the same year. 

Wayne Gretzky is the only name that appears on all three lists, further emboldening his status as the best player of all time. 

The third name on the list might surprise you. Dominik Hasek, who won the Hart Trophy in 1997 and 1998, is the only goaltender with consecutive MVP awards. 

Wayne Gretzky (1980 – 1987)

Gretzky accomplished the deed four times over and won the Hart Trophy an inconceivable eight seasons running. It’s a record that should stand in perpetuity. Gretzky led the Oilers to four 

Stanley Cup finals during his invincible eight-year reign as the league’s MVP. 

He also won both the Conn Smythe and Hart Trophy in 1985, enhancing his unassailable dominance. 

Gretzky enjoyed one more Hart Trophy during his hallowed career. His ninth and final Hart Trophy came in 1989, his first season with the Kings. Had it not been for Mario Lemieux’s 1988 Hart Trophy campaign, the Great One would have reeled off 10 in a row. 

Dominik Hasek (1997 and 1998)

Hasek was dubbed the Dominator during his playing career for obvious reasons. Playing in his one-of-a-kind style, the Czech netminder readily appeared erratic, even uncontrolled. However, the polar opposite was true, as Hasek continually showcased his rare talent as one of the best to play the position. 

Hasek was a six-time Vezina winner and led the Sabres to the 1999 Stanley Cup Final, where they fell  to the Dallas Stars in six games.. At that time, Hasek was in the prime of his career, the pinnacle of his elite level. He led the NHL in save percentage for six straight seasons and finished his career just one Vezina shy of Jaques Plante, the all-time leader.

Hasek eventually lifted the Holy Grail on two occasions, in 2002 and 2008, both as a member of the Detroit Red Wings. In addition, he won both the Hart Trophy and Vezina in 1997 and 1998, the only goaltender to pull off the double in consecutive campaigns. 

It’s an achievement that may never be repeated, one that propels his name atop the greatest-goaltenders-of-all-time list. 

Alexander Ovechkin (2008 and 2009)

Alexander Ovechkin is one of three players who has won the Hart Trophy more than twice since 1980. Two of those MVP awards came in consecutive years, 2008 and 2009. 

The Great 8 has 780 goals and is chasing Gretzky’s all-time goalscoring record of 894. He is on pace to surpass Gretzky in the 2024-25 season, which would immortalize his status as the most prolific goalscorer. 

Ovechkin won his first MVP trophy in his third NHL season at just 23 years old. He followed that 112-point season with a 110-point campaign and won his second Hart Trophy in as many seasons. 

As far as NHL betting picks go, Ovechkin is pegged at +2000 to win the 2022-23 Hart Trophy. While his chances of winning are comparatively slim, nothing is out of reach for the generational talent who set the league alight by scoring two goals in his NHL debut against the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2005. 

If Ovechkin can win a fourth Hart Trophy, he’d join Gretzky, Eddie Shore and Gordie Howe as the only players who’ve been named the NHL’s MVP more than three times. 

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About the Author

Gary Pearson

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Gary Pearson is a freelance sports writer who contributes regularly to BetMGM, specializing in hockey, tennis and soccer coverage.

Gary Pearson is a freelance sports writer who contributes regularly to BetMGM, specializing in hockey, tennis and soccer coverage.