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Conn Smythe Power Rankings: Cale Makar, Connor McDavid, & More

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DENVER, COLORADO - MAY 03: Cale Makar #8 of the Colorado Avalanche is congratulated by his teammmates after scoring a goal against the Nashville Predators in the first period during Game One of the First Round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Capital One Arena at Ball Arena on May 03, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. Matthew Stockman/Getty Images/AFP (Photo by MATTHEW STOCKMAN / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP)

Not even halfway through the Stanley Cup Playoffs, favorites have emerged to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Playoff MVP in the National Hockey League.

Currently, Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar is the early favorite. While player performance is naturally a big part of earning the award, team success is also a major factor. Only one skater in history, Reggie Leach of the Philadelphia Flyers in 1976, has won the Conn Smythe Trophy while skating for the losing side in the Stanley Cup Final.

That means that the top candidates are players that are not only productive in the postseason, but also have a chance to win the Stanley Cup. Here are the latest Conn Smythe odds from DraftKings Sportsbook.

Check out the latest comprehensive and most trusted Sportsbook Reviews by SBR here.

Here is a look at the top contenders for the Conn Smythe Trophy based on their current odds.

Cale Makar

Through eight games, Makar has produced a dozen points (three goals, nine assists) and the Avalanche have dominated play with Makar on the ice, controlling 63.2% of 5v5 shot attempts and 63.5% of expected goals (xG).

Nathan MacKinnon

While MacKinnon has nine points (5 G, 4 A) in eight games, he is also generating 5.75 shots on goal per game. Among players that have reached the second round of the playoffs, the second highest average shots on goal per game belong to Edmonton’s Evander Kane, at 4.18, so MacKinnon is creating so many more chances and the Avs are controlling play to the tune of 65.4% of 5v5 shot attempts and 63.8% of the xG.

He would have to overtake Makar but the two Avalanche stars are naturally the leading candidates as the best players on the team with the best chance to win the Stanley Cup.

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Last season’s Conn Smythe winner had to battle against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the first round and had a .885 save percentage through the first six games of the series.

But from Game 7 against Toronto through the second-round sweep of the Florida Panthers, Vasilevskiy has stopped 181 of 185 shots, a mind-boggling .978 save percentage during his most recent five-game run. If the Lightning are going to win a third straight Stanley Cup, there is a good chance that Vasilevskiy will be a big part of that success.

Connor McDavid

If the Conn Smythe Trophy was about who has been the best player in the playoffs thus far, McDavid would be running away with the award. He has 25 points (6 G, 19 A) in 11 games with the Oilers outscoring opponents 22-8 during 5v5 play when he is on the ice.

He is playing at a different speed than the rest of the league and has been a huge part of the Oilers efforts to build a 3-1 series lead against the Calgary Flames. The biggest hurdle for McDavid winning the Conn Smythe is that he is still likely to face the daunting task of playing against the Colorado Avalanche in the next round.

Nikita Kucherov

The leading scorer in the past two playoffs has produced 15 points (4 G, 11 A) in 11 playoff games this season.

That has involved some ups and downs, but he is such a brilliant talent that there is the possibility that Kucherov can produce 30-plus points if the Lightning go to the Stanley Cup Final. That is the kind of production that will force recognition.

Victor Hedman

Consistently ranked among the top blueliners in the league, Hedman is always a huge part of the Lightning’s success. A finalist for the Norris Trophy for six consecutive seasons, he has 10 points (2 G, 8 A) in 11 games. Tampa Bay is getting 53.1% of the 5v5 xG with Hedman on the ice. He is not a Conn Smythe winner yet but could be in that discussion after two more rounds.

Igor Shesterkin

The Rangers have evened their series with the Carolina Hurricanes, and their star goaltender is a huge reason for it.

Shesterkin has a .925 save percentage in the postseason and plays behind a Rangers defense that has allowed 36.3 shots and 3.52 xG per 60 minutes during 5v5 play, both rates are the highest among teams that have reached the second round.

Here are the latest Stanley Cup odds from DraftKings, FanDuel Sportsbook, and Caesars Sportsbook.

Make sure to keep an eye on our Live Odds page throughout the week to get the best lines possible and connect with others in the SBR community on our popular sports betting forum.