The Conn Smythe Trophy is awarded to the most valuable player in the playoffs & the sportsbooks have NHL odds trading right now. Let's review the top contenders.
Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
Remember that Kane was supposed to miss the first round of the playoffs due to an injury but he surprised a lot of people by coming back early. And since he’s been back, he’s been as dangerous as ever. The Blackhawks offense has not produced consistently in the playoffs but Kane has. He has nine goals and six assists through four games of the Western Conference final.
Kane has clearly been a stud and with Corey Crawford being up and down, and Jonathan Toews being somewhat quiet this postseason, Kane is best NHL pick for this prop if you think the Blackhawks win it all.
Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks
Perry has clearly been one of the playoff MVP’s and his production goes much deeper than the numbers. Yes, he’s second in terms of playoff points (17) and goals (9) but he’s continued to rise to the occasion when the Ducks have needed him the most. That includes game-winning goals, momentum-changing plays and much more. He’s tied with Ryan Getzlaf and Victor Hedman for the best plus-minus in the playoffs (+10). And don’t forget that he only has one less point than Tampa Bay’s Tyler Johnson but he’s actually played four less games.
Every time he steps on the ice, he continues he’s a threat and even though he’s been attracting the opposing team’s top defensive pairing, he’s still managing to put up points. He’s the top candidate off the Ducks and if they go all the way, he’ll hoist this award.
Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Lightning
Tyler Johnson has been held pointless for two straight games but even so, this is a player that leads the NHL in points in the postseason (18). He also leads all playoff participants with 12 goals, which is quite impressive. Although Steve Stamkos has come to life of late, it was Johnson and his line that were carrying the Lightning in the early stages of the playoffs when they got pushed to the brink by the Detroit Red Wings.
If the Lightning end up winning the Cup, expect Johnson to be among the frontrunners.
Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
The Rangers offense was quite a surprise in the regular season when they finished third, averaging 3.02 goals per game. However, once the playoffs started, they reverted back to their bread and butter: being a defense-oriented team that focuses on winning conservative, low-scoring games. That means if they end up hoisting Lord Stanley’s mug, it’ll be King Henrik who is awarded the MVP. Through 17 games this postseason, Lundqvist has a .929 save percentage along with a 2.06 GAA. Although Ducks goaltender Frederik Andersen has a slightly better GAA and Caps goaltender Braden Holtby has a slightly better save percentage, neither are really in the running here. If the Rangers win it all, Lundqvist will be the Conn Smythe winner.