The Most Important Player Remaining For Each NHL Team
Most Important Player For Each Remaining 2013 Stanley Cup Team
It has been an interesting 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. We’ve seen our fair share of drama, high scoring and terrific goaltending all wrapped up in one postseason. As always, the NHL playoffs come out fairly unpredictable. What we do know is that we have four teams left, all of which could easily take home the cup in the end.
Our two number-one seeds are part of the final four standing. The Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks were the two best teams all regular season and have both taken different paths to get here. The Penguins have cruised in six against the New York Islanders and five against the Ottawa Senators by using their high powered offensive attack while the Blackhawks needed to overcome a 3-1 deficit against the Detroit Red Wings to advance.
As for the challengers, the defending champion Los Angeles Kings are getting hot at the right time again thanks to stellar performances in net by Jonathan Quick. The Boston Bruins are also getting hot at the right time as they made quick work of the New York Rangers with excellent defense.
Like I previously stated, any of these four teams could easily win the Stanley Cup. You have the last two champions and the current two number one seeds all vying for the crown. All four teams have a different style and win by different facets of the game. If any one of these teams wants to win it all, here is the most important player for that to happen.
Los Angeles Kings - Jonathan Quick
Quick has been lights out all postseason. He has a 1.50 goals against average and a .948 save percentage. He carried his team by stopping 25 of 26 shots in game seven against the San Jose Sharks. Opposing netminder Corey Crawford has been good as well, so Quick has to be on his game for the Kings to advance.
Chicago Blackhawks - Patrick Sharp
Patrick Sharp is tied for the playoff lead in goals with seven. He had five in the opening-round series against the Minnesota Wild, one that only went to five games. He only had two in the Red Wings series, but did score in game seven. He needs to carry the load against the Kings and try to put a few behind Quick in net.
Pittsburgh Penguins - Jarome Iginla
Jarome Iginla had the choice to go to the Penguins or the Bruins for the trade deadline and he opted to go with Pittsburgh. The target will be on his back on this series and he has a lot to prove. He has never been this close to a Stanley Cup. With the Bruins defense targeting Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, Iginla has the perfect opportunity to fly under the radar and be the difference maker.
Boston Bruins - Zdeno Chara
Zdeno Chara has logged a ton of ice time for the Bruins this postseason and this series will be no different. Expect Chara to be out there every single time Crosby is on the ice. Chara needs to be that physical presence and stay out of the penalty box. The Penguins draw a lot of penalties and the Bruins have an excellent penalty kill, but they need Chara out there to be the anchor.