By Tyler Leli @jetleli on May 1, 2014
On Thursday afternoon it was announced Sidney Crosby, Claude Giroux and Ryan Getzlaf were the finalists for the 2014 Hart Trophy, which is essentially the NHL's MVP Award. Each of the three candidates had great regular-season production, but after a closer look at things, it is obvious that Crosby should win the award. To that end, I have compiled a list of five reasons why Crosby should win the Hart Trophy.
Aside from just being a dominant force offensively, Crosby was actually one of the best defensive forwards in the NHL during the 2013-2014 season. Crosby won the third most faceoffs of any player in the NHL, compiled a more than acceptable 52.5 percent mark on faceoffs, and managed an impressive 1.4 takeaways per 60 minutes. Nobody will ever look at Crosby as a defensive minded player, but this part of his game was surely a plus this year.
Crosby played in 80 games during the 2013-2014 season, and, remarkably enough, he didn't go more than two games without picking up a point. Along the way he compiled 30 multi-point performances, and was generally great on a night-in, night-out basis. Suffice to say, no player was more consistent than "Sid the Kid."
Playing 80 games wouldn't seem like a big deal to most players, but after averaging only 33 games over the last three regular seasons, it certainly was for Crosby. The 26-year-old center suffered multiple nagging injuries throughout the season, but he played through them, and was great in the process.
A big part of winning the Hart Trophy is making your team better, and Crosby certainly did this as the Penguins compiled 109 points and the second spot in the Eastern Conference. There is no doubt Crosby played a huge role in making this happen. He helped the likes of Jussi Jokinen and Chris Kunitz post statistics above their natural talent ability, further proving his value to the Penguins.
Ultimately, many voters look at a players statistics when voting for the Hart Trophy, and Crosby was undoubtedly a behemoth in this category. He led the NHL in assists, points and ranked seventh in goals, eighth in power play goals and third in power play points. All in all, no player looks better on paper than Crosby, and that will seal his second career Hart Trophy victory.
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