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Three voted Calder Trophy finalists

The SportsXchange

Forwards Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche are the three finalists for the 2013-14 Calder Memorial Trophy, the NHL announced Wednesday.

The trophy is awarded "to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition."

Tampa Bay is the first club to boast multiple Calder finalists since Chicago's Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews finished first and third, respectively, in 2008.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association submitted ballots for the Calder Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Tuesday, June 24, during the 2014 NHL Awards from Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas.

Johnson scored 24 goals to set a Lightning rookie record and tie MacKinnon for the lead among NHL rookies. He tied for the overall League lead in shorthanded goals (five) and tallied five power-play goals, becoming the second rookie in NHL history to record five of each in one season (Dennis Maruk, 1975-76).

MacKinnon topped all first-year players in points (63), goals (24-tied), assists (39), power-play goals (8), game-winning goals (5-tied) and shots (241). The first overall pick in the 2013 NHL Draft tallied at least one point in 13 consecutive games from Jan. 25 to March 6 (5-13--18), breaking Wayne Gretzky's NHL record for the longest single-season point streak by a player age 18 or younger (12 games).

Palat ranked second among rookie scorers with 23-36--59, three points shy of Brad Richards' Lightning rookie record of 62 points in 2000-01.

Palat was the league's top rookie threat over the second half of the season, leading all first-year players in scoring after Jan. 1 (17-27--44 in 42 games played, including 14 multiple-point games) and earning NHL Rookie of the Month honors for January and March.

From 1936-37 until his death in 1943, NHL president Frank Calder purchased a trophy each year to be given permanently to the NHL's outstanding rookie. After Calder's death, NHL presented the Calder Trophy in his memory.

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