Maurice Rocket Richard Trophy Winners

By Kapil Sapkota / 29 June 2023 03:08 AM

Image: Maurice Richard Trophy
Source : nhl

Maurice Rocket Richard Trophy winners are Connor McDavid, Auston Matthews, David Pastrnak, Alex Ovechkin. Here is Rocket Richard Winners list by year.

The trophy was gifted to the NHL by the Montreal Canadiens in January 1999. It honors and is named after Maurice Richard, who was a former iconic player of the team.

A Finnish Ice Hockey Winger, Teemu Selanne, from Mighty Ducks of Anaheim won the first Rocket Richard Trophy in 1999. Connor McDavid holds the trophy as of the 2022-23 season.

The "Rocket": The Maurice Richard Story

Joseph Henri Maurice "Rocket" Richard (born 1921) was a professional Canadian hockey player. The iconic athlete played 18 seasons in the National Hockey League (NHL) for his team Montreal Canadiens.

Richard was the first player to score 50 goals in 50 games in a season and the first to make 500 career goals.

Richard started playing hockey with his school and neighborhood squads in his early days. While studying at Montreal Technical School to become a machinist, he played for several teams including with an amateur club, where he scored 133 of the team’s total 144 goals.

Maurice signed with the Montreal Senior Canadiens in 1940.

Photo: Maurice Richard, one of the greatest NHL player ever
Source : nhl

NHL Career

Richard was 5 times top goal scorer in his 18-season NHL career and also the all-time top goal scorer at the time of his retirement.

The rightwinger scored 82 playoff goals, including 6 overtime goals. The 'Rocket' made seven playoff hat tricks scoring 18 game-winning playoff goals.

Being a member of eight Stanley Cup champion teams, he was the one who made all 5 goals against Toronto in 1944 and was named as all three of the game’s stars.

Richard ended up his career in 1960 as he was suffering from several injuries including a severed Achilles Tendon.

(Watch a video made by the NHL about Maurice Richard)

Fights, Riots, and More

Richard was often a short-tempered personality. He always answered any challenges or attacks. A very serious fight broke out between Richard and Hal Laycoe (a Boston Bruin player) in March 1995. Maurice followed Laycoe with his stick and hit a linesman, Cliff Thompson who intervened with him.

Richard grabbed a stick from the ice and swung to Laycoe wildly. It did cut Laycoe's below-the-eye part. It was one of the worst events that ever happened between the players.

For that incident, Richard was suspended by NHL for the rest of the year including the final 3 games of the ongoing season and all the playoffs. This made the Canadiens fans outraged as Richard was very close to winning his first points-scored title.

The offended fans attacked Campbell in a game at the Montreal Forum on St. Patrick’s Day. It led to several acts of violence. The event was known as the "Richard Riot" later.

The famous player died of cancer at the age of 78 in 2000.

(Watch to know more about "Richard Riot")

When did the Rocket Richard Trophy start?

The Rocket Richard Trophy, also called the  Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy was started in 1999. Montreal Canadiens donated the trophy to the NHL in 1998-99 which is named in honor of the iconic player Joseph Henri Maurice Richard, the former player of the team.

The trophy is presented annually to the player finishing the regular season as the league's leading goal scorer.

Rocket Richard Winners by year

Rocket Richard Trophy is being presented to the top scorer in the NHL since 1999. The trophy has been awarded to 28 NHL players as of 2023.

Among the trophy holders, Alex Ovechkin from the Washington Capitals has the record for the highest 65 goals in his name in 2008. To our surprise, the least 41 goals were made in 2004 by 3 trophy-winning players!

The Rocket Richard Trophy winners in different years are as follows:

  • Teemu Selanne; Mighty Ducks of Anaheim: 47 goals; 1999
  • Pavel Bure; Florida Panthers: 58 goals; 2000
  • Pavel Bure; Florida Panthers: 59 goals; 2001
  • Jarome Iginla; Calgary Flames: 52 goals; 2002
  • Milan Hejduk; Colorado Avalanche: 50 goals; 2003
  • Jarome Iginla; Calgary Flames: 41 goals; 2004
  • Ilya Kovalchuk; Atlanta Thrashers: 41 goals; 2004
  • Rick Nash; Columbus: Blue Jackets: 41 goals; 2004
  • Jonathan Cheechoo; San Jose Sharks: 56 goals; 2006
  • Vincent Lecavalier; Tampa Bay Lightning: 52 goals; 2007
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 65 goals; 2008
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 56 goals; 2009
  • Steven Stamkos; Tampa Bay Lightning 51 goals; 2010
  • Sidney Crosby; Pittsburgh Penguins: 51 goals; 2010
  • Corey Perry; Anaheim Ducks: 50 goals; 2011
  • Steven Stamkos; Tampa Bay Lightning: 60 goals; 2012
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 32 goals; 2013
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 51 goals; 2014
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 53 goals; 2015
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 50 goals; 2016
  • Sidney Crosby; Pittsburgh Penguins: 44 goals; 2017
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 49 goals; 2018
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 51 goals; 2019
  • David Pastrnak; Boston Bruins: 48 goals; 2020
  • Alex Ovechkin; Washington Capitals: 48 goals; 2020
  • Auston Matthews; Toronto Maple Leafs: 41 goals; 2021
  • Auston Matthews; Toronto Maple Leafs: 60 goals; 2022
  • Connor McDavid; Edmonton Oilers: 64 goals; 2023

(Source: NHL)

Who has the most Rocket Richard trophies?

Photo: Alexander Ovechkin
Source : theguardian

Alexander Ovechkin aka Alex Ovechkin has the most number of Rocket Richard Trophies. The professional ice hockey player is from Russia. He was born in 1985. Alex won the Hart Memorial Trophy in 2008, 2009, and 2013. He is one of the most valuable players in the NHL.

The leftwinger is also the captain of the Washington Capitals. The team won its first Stanley Cup championship in his captaincy in 2018.

Alex won the Rocket Richard Trophy 9 times to date winning it for the first time in the 2007-08 league. The player made the Rocket Richard Trophy in his name for 4 times in a row from 2012-13 to 2015-16.

He won the trophy again in the following year 2008-09 with a score of 56 goals from 79 goals. The player again had the trophy in his name for 3 times in a row from 2017-18 to 2019-20. No other players have won the Rocket Richard Trophy more than 2 times!

How many Stanley Cups did Maurice Richard win?

Maurice Richard won Stanley Cups 8 times with Montreal Canadiens.

Richard won it for the first time in the 1943-44 season and then again in the 1945-46 season. The third time Rocket won the cup was in the 1952-53 season. He made a record-setting 5 times straight winning the cup from 1955-56 to 1959-60.

The Stanley Cup is awarded to the National Hockey League (NHL) playoff champion every year. The championship trophy is the oldest existing trophy in the NHL. The Stanley Cup is considered to be one of the "most important championships available to the sport" by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF). 

Commissioned as the "Dominion Hockey Challenge Cup" in 1892, the trophy was renamed "The Stanley Cup". It is named after Lord Stanley of Preston who was the Governor General of Canada.

(Watch a rare interview of Richard after winning The Stanley Cup)

1. Stanley Cup Finals 1943 - 44: Montreal Canadiens vs Chicago Blackhawks

Montreal Canadiens won against the Blackhawks in 4 games. This was Rocket's second season as a pro in the NHL. Still, he scored 32 goals and made 22 assists during the season. The series was finished by Rocket with 5 goals and 2 assists.

2. Stanley Cup Finals 1945 - 46: Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins

Richard and Toe Blake contributed 7/7 goals for the Canadiens and finished the playoffs. The Canadiens finished the Boston Bruins in 5 games. Rocket scored 3 goals and 2 assists to finish the series. This was the peak-performing period of Richard.

3. Stanley Cup Finals 1952 - 53: Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins

Another Stanley Cup came to Rocket again this year after 7 years. In this match, he managed to score 4 goals and 1 assist to boot. He scored 70 goals this season.

4. Stanley Cup Finals 1955 - 56: Montreal Canadiens vs Detroit Red Wings

The Canadiens got the victory over the Red Wings in just 5 games. The Wings were swept away in just 5 games. Richard scored 2 goals and 2 assists in the series.

5. Stanley Cup Finals 1956 - 57: Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins

The Bruins were not a new rival to the Canadiens. The cup again came in the name of Richard as he scored 4 goals. 5 games were played in total with Boston to gain the victory and sweep away the Bruins.

6. Stanley Cup Finals 1957 - 58: Montreal Canadiens vs Boston Bruins

The series ended with 6 games making the Canadiens winner again. Richard scored 11 goals in the series in total among which 4 were scored in finals. He also assisted for a goal of his team.

7. Stanley Cup Finals 1958 - 59: Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs

Richard was already 37 in this match. Total 5 games were played in the series and Richard played in 3 of them. No score was made by Richard this time, but the team won the match against Maple Leafs.

8. Stanley Cup Finals 1959 - 60: Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs

There were 4 matches played in the series and Montreal Canadiens became the winner. Richard scored a goal and 2 assists. This was Richard's final Stanley Cup.

Rocket Richard Jersey Number

Maurice Richard Jersey
Source : nhl

Rocket Richard's jersey number was 9.

However, he was seen wearing 15 number jersey while playing for the Canadiens. In 1943, he had his first child, a baby girl Huguette Richard weighing 9 pounds at her birth. Rocket requested his team and was permitted to change his number to 9 in honor of his baby girl. 

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