The award is given annually to the player voted most valuable to his team by members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association at the end of the regular season.
MacKinnon was named a finalist along with Toronto Maple Leafs' center Auston Matthews and Edmonton Oilers' captain Connor McDavid.
MacKinnon finished the 2020-2021 season with 65 points (20 goals and 45 assists) in 48 games, ranking him fourth in the league in points per game (1.36), behind McDavid (1.88), Oilers' Leon Draisaitl (1.50) and the New York Rangers' Artemi Panarin (1.38).
The Avs forward was drafted first overall in the 2013 Entry Draft and has averaged just over 26 goals and 43 assists per season.
MacKinnon is the third Avalanche to be named a finalist for the NHL Awards. Goaltender Philipp Grubauer was named a finalist for the Vezina Trophy and defenseman Cale Makar was named a finalist for the Norris Trophy.
Winners of the NHL Awards will be announced during the Stanley Cup semifinals and Stanley Cup Final. The NHL has not yet announced the format or date of the announcement.
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