Who's going to win the Conn Smythe Trophy this year? Could it be someone who doesn't even make the finals??
Jimmy Howard - His play has been amazing. He's played in 26 straight games dating back to March 28. In the playoffs, he is posting a .929% SV% and 2.21 GAA. While not being a top 3 in either stat for the playoffs, he's 3rd in saves and 3rd in shots faced. He's the reason the Red Wings are even in the playoffs and one win away from the Conference finals. He's been calm, cool, and collected. No other goalie has the pressure he has, knowing that there is no one else who will play between the pipes for the Red Wings in the playoffs.
Henrik Zetterberg - THE Captain. Not A Captain. THE Captain. Is there another team that leans so heavily on their leadership? Where he goes, the Wings go. He epitomizes this team better than anyone else. He works harder than any other player, faces the toughest matchup, and when a goal is needed, he's risen to the occasion. 2 goals in game 6 and 1+1 in game 7 vs Anaheim. So far he's been in the head of Toews to the point of frustration. You rarely, if ever, see him rattled or complaining to the refs. Consummate professional.
Sidney Crosby - 7 goals, 7 assists in 9 games. Always working hard (and crying harder) on the ice. Never out of the top awards talk.
David Krejci - Really established himself as a future franchise leader. Chara gets a ton of love, but Krejci has made that top line with Lucic and Horton click. He hustles and bustles as much as anyone. Leads the league in SCP points at 17. +9 rating helps too.
Joe Thornton - Jumbo Joe has found some new legs against LA this series. He's playing defense better than he has any other time I've watched him in his career. He's working harder too. I think he knows he doesn't have much left in the tank after this year and it's only going to be harder for the Sharks. Pavelski and Couture get some credit but seem to be taking a distinct back seat to Thornton in the playoffs.
Jonathan Quick - An unreal 1.50 GAA and .948% SV %. Un-freakin-real. Can't say anyone is scared of LA's defense, but no one could possible want to face Quick. And that's while facing St Louis and San Jose. Corey Crawford, who has been outstanding as well, would get a nomination if they beat Detroit, but his numbers are inflated by playing Minnesota in the 1st round.
I'm sure there are some others I didn't mention. Who would you put on your Conn Smythe watchlist?