Connor McDavid sulks Conn Smythe

Connor McDavid sulks Conn Smythe
Connor McDavid sulks Conn Smythe

A total of 42 points. The fourth most productive crop in playoff history. It was hard to miss Connor McDavid’s candidacy for the Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded to the most valuable player in the playoffs.

It was to boos that McDavid was appointed by commissioner Gary Bettman. Moreover, the Ontarian did not return to the ice to collect his honor.

Getty Images via AFP

However, the die was probably cast since the Oilers leveled the series. In any case, on my ballot (I am one of the privileged 16 who have the right to vote), it was. Without their captain, the representatives of the Alberta capital would possibly have packed up in four games. Definitely in five.

“It makes you sweat,” McDavid said to journalists present on site.

“We showed character all season. All winter, we demonstrated that we could overcome the most difficult challenges, he also mentioned, with a tremor in his voice. When you’re down 0-3, it’s difficult to win four games in a row against a team like that. But we were there. »

Believe it until the end

Nevertheless, the Ontarian got up. In addition to preventing his team from suffering elimination three times in a row, his two four-point evenings propelled them to the summits with the power of a nuclear turbine.

Still, the Oilers came up short by just one goal.

“We never stopped believing in it. We always believed that we would be able to score another one, he said. Zach (Hyman) had a great opportunity. Bouch (Evan Bouchard) too. It just didn’t sink in. »

McDavid became the sixth player (the second forward) to engrave his name on this trophy in a losing cause after Roger Crozier (1966), Glenn Hall (1968), Reggie Leach (1976), Ron Hextall (1987) and Jean-Sébastien Giguère (2003).

“It’s an honor to have my name on this trophy, but…” he said.

With Gretzky and Lemieux

We understand that the Stanley Cup was McDavid’s only goal, that said, he can leave modesty aside. The performances he has delivered over the last two months are worthy of the great years of Gretzky and Mario Lemieux.

In playoff history, only Gretzky (47 points in 1985), Lemieux (44 points in 1991) and Gretzky (43 points in 1988) have been more productive. Of McDavid’s 42 points, 11 came in the final, two fewer than Gretzky’s 13 in 1988.

Along the way, he eclipsed the number of passes made by La Merveille (31) during that same spring of 1988. McDavid recorded 34.

We can add that the 11 points he scored this spring when his team faced elimination place him at the top of a quartet completed by Justin Williams (2014), Anze Kopitar (2014) and Mika Zibanejad (2022) .

No, there was no question who the 2024 playoff MVP would be.



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