News

Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman is the leading candidate for the Conn Smythe Trophy

Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman is the leading candidate for the Conn Smythe Trophy
Sports
Victor Hedman, six-foot-six before his skates go on, is used to standing head and shoulders above everybody on the ice. He’s doing it again, this time as the leading candidate for the Conn Smythe Trophy.

The Tampa Bay Lightning defenceman had 10 playoff goals going into Game 4 of the Stanley Cup final Friday night. Bobby Orr never had that many in a single playoffs; only Paul Coffey, with 12, and Brian Leetch, with 11, scored more in one post-season. Three of Hedman’s 10 were game-winners.

“I like to contribute offensively, but we’re not here for our personal stats,” Hedman said. “We’re here for one thing, that’s winning the Stanley Cup. I’m happy with the way things are going but, at the end of the day, if that’s by a goal or a blocked shot, it doesn’t matter to us, the goal is still the same.”

Hedman leads all players that lasted beyond the first round in average ice time on ice, at 26 minutes. More importantly, perhaps, he took over leadership of the Lightning with captain Steven Stamkos sidelined in these playoffs until taking five shifts in Game 3 Wednesday.

“(Hedman) controls the game,” teammate Mikhail Sergachev said. “He plays all situations. He not only eats minutes, he’s so great killing penalties, playing the power play, five-on-five. It’s unbelievable how well he plays.

“He has done everything for us. He’s been huge.”

The Conn Smythe award, given to the most valuable player of the Stanley Cup tournament, won’t get handed out until the Cup itself is awarded. Tracking the favourites is a bit like the stock market. A player’s value goes up and down with each passing game, each passing series.

The award, as voted on by 18 members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association, is supposed to reflect the entire playoffs, but typically the final round carries a bit more weight. Here’s a look at the favourites for the Conn Smythe, named in honour of the founder of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Read more on Toronto Star
News Topics :
Similar Articles :
Sports
Victor Hedman is closing in on the NHL record for goals by a defenseman in a single postseason, and the man he is chasing is rooting for him to break...
Sports
EDMONTON—Five years after socially distancing from the Prince of Wales Trophy and losing in the Stanley Cup final, the Tampa Bay Lightning got their hands on and arms around it...
Sports
To celebrate the anniversary of the award, which was voted on by the NHL governors for the first seven seasons and the Professional Hockey Writers Association since 1971, NHL asked...
Sports
It was Brian Lawton, then the general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning, who selected Victor Hedman second overall in the 2009 NHL draft. The New York Islanders had finished...
Sports
WASHINGTON—No NHL defenceman had recorded a post season point streak of at least eight games in more than two decades before Tuesday night, when Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman crossed that threshold...