WHL Alumni Leon Draisaitl wins Art Ross Trophy as NHL scoring champ

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WHL Alumni Leon Draisaitl is the NHL’s scoring champion for the 2019-20 regular season.

Tuesday afternoon, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman announced the 2019-20 NHL regular season had officially come to a close as he unveiled the league’s plan for a 24-team playoff in the coming months. With that announcement, Draisaitl’s place atop the NHL scoring charts was officially cemented, earning him the Art Ross Trophy.

Draisaitl, a 24-year-old product of Cologne, Germany, torched the NHL this past season, racking up 110 points (43G-67A) in 71 games played. The 110 points serve as a career high for the 6-foot-2, 207-pound forward, whose previous career mark of 105 points came during the 2018-19 NHL campaign.

Since arriving on the NHL scene, the former WHL star has done nothing but electrify. Over the course of 422 career NHL regular season contests, Draisaitl has 422 points (168G-254A) to his credit, adding another 16 points (6G-10A) in 13 career NHL post-season outings.

Prior to emerging as a modern day NHL superstar, Draisaitl honed his skills in the Western Hockey League, landing in North America for the first time as a member of the Prince Albert Raiders.

Selected second overall by the Raiders in the 2012 CHL Import Draft, Draisaitl made an immediate impact upon his arrival in Hockey Town North, registering 58 points (21G-37A) in 64 games during his rookie campaign. He spent two seasons in Prince Albert, recording 163 points (59G-104A) in 128 regular season games. A 105-point season in 2013-14 saw Draisaitl named to the WHL’s Eastern Conference First All-Star Team, and ultimately, resulted in the Edmonton Oilers calling his name third overall during the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia.

After a 39-game tour with the Oilers to open the 2014-15 season, Draisaitl was eventually returned to the WHL and subsequently traded to the Kelowna Rockets. The German forward’s triumphant return to the WHL was nothing short of dominant, as he recorded 53 points (19G-32A) in only 32 regular season games. Draisaitl’s injection of offence helped the Rockets secure a second-place finish in the WHL’s overall standings with a record of 53-13-5-1 (112 points).

From there, Draisaitl and the Rockets tore up the WHL post-season. With 28 points (10G-18A) in 19 playoff contests, Draisaitl was named WHL Playoff MVP as the Rockets captured the Ed Chynoweth Cup, sweeping the Brandon Wheat Kings in four games. Though the Rockets eventually fell in overtime to the Oshawa Generals in the Memorial Cup championship, Draisaitl continued to have his way with opponents, registering seven points (4G-3A) in five games to lead the tournament in scoring en route to being presented with the Stafford Smythe Trophy as Memorial Cup MVP.

Now only five years removed from hoisting the Ed Chynoweth Cup and thrilling fans across the entire Western Hockey League, Leon Draisaitl is the NHL’s scoring champion.

From all your friends at the WHL – congratulations, Leon!

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