5 Front-Runners For NHL's Conn Smythe Trophy
By Daniel Friedman
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If you haven't tuned into the NHL playoffs yet, you should probably get on that.
Both the Eastern and Western Conference finals have gone the distance and will require a decisive seventh game, which should make for some fantastic theater. There's so much talent on all four remaining teams that it's hard to imagine any of them being eliminated.
Who's had the biggest impact on their team's respective success? Let's take a look at five possible playoff MVPs:
5. Duncan Keith, Chicago Blackhawks
A defenseman hasn't earned the distinction since Scott Niedermayer in 2007, but if there's a guy who can do it, it's Keith. Sixteen points in 16 games, and he's averaging nearly 32 minutes of ice time per game -- by far the most of anyone in the postseason. He's been sharp defensively, too.
4. Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks
Ryan Getzlaf has two more points (two goals, 17 assists), but I'm giving Perry the nod for getting it done in both the goals (9) and assists (8) categories. He's such an opportunistic player, and he's clutch (yes, that's a real thing) too.
3. Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
Ten goals and 17 points in 16 games will get you and your team places. He's one of the main reasons Chicago has hung around in this very tough matchup with Anaheim.
2. Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Lightning
The triplets line is superb, but everything seems to run through Johnson. His 20 points leads all players, he's constantly reminded us that he's going to be a star.
1. Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
Though he hasn't been at his best at certain points over the past six games, he's still been reason No. 1 why the Rangers are where they are. His 2.11 goals-against average and .928 save percentage are tops among the four remaining goaltenders.
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