About the Conn Smythe trophy for the MVP of the NHL playoffs

Conn Smythe Trophy – Most Valuable Player Of The NHL Playoffs

Whether it is the regular season or the postseason, there are always players who stand out as the top players of that season in the NHL. The NHL player with the best influence on his club throughout the regular season receives the MVP award and the Hart Memorial Trophy.

Nevertheless, because the Hart trophy is only awarded for the regular season, the MVP of the postseason is given a different award, the Conne Smythe trophy. Let’s take a quick glance back at the trophy’s history and genesis before moving on to further details.

History Of The Conn Smythe Trophy

History of the Conn Symthe Award

In memory of Constantine Falkland Cary Smythe, popularly known as Conn Smythe, the Conn Smythe trophy was first presented to the league in 1964 as an honorary trophy. Maple Leaf Garden Limited was the body that made and presented it to the NHL.

The Maple Leaf Garden Limited and the NHL franchise, the Toronto Maple Leafs, were both owned and operated by Conn Smythe. He was a businessman, a soldier, and an athlete. In addition to creating the Maple Leafs and coaching them, he also constructed the Maple Leaf Garden, the team’s new home.

Eight times, his name was inscribed on the trophy, which represents the eight championships the Toronto Maple Leafs won during his ownership.

A silver maple leaf fastened to the back of the Conn Smythe trophy depicts an excellent recreation of the Maple Leaf Garden. A wooden foundation that has had extra layers added to it throughout the years is then installed on top of this.

The names of former winners are inscribed on a little silver maple leaf plate that is fastened to the wooden base. Conn Smythe’s original trophy had a single base that could accommodate up to 16 names. But there are now two new bases that can store 20 and 24 names, respectively.

  • First base – 16 names
  • Second base – 20 names
  • Third base – 24 names
  • Uppermost base – 9 names

Nine names were moved to the uppermost base after the third base was filled. Right now, the Conn Smythe trophy can hold 69 names at any time.

For each year that a new winner emerges, the oldest maple leaf tag is removed, and the rest are shifted so that the new tag can be added in chronological order.

About The Conn Smythe Trophy

About the Conn Smythe Award  in the NHL

Now that the Conn Smythe Trophy’s history has been covered, let’s talk a little bit about it and how the winners are determined.

Following the conclusion of the regular season, the NHL playoff MVP receives the Conn Smythe award. Only players on teams that qualify for the playoffs have a chance to win the award because it only covers the playoffs.

Only 16 of the NHL’s 32 clubs currently make the playoffs, so only players from those 16 teams will even be taken into consideration. Moreover, player stats from the regular season are not taken into consideration. This implies that a player’s performance throughout the regular season has no bearing on how he ranks as the Conn Smythe Trophy’s MVP.

The Professional Hockey Writers Association conducts a poll during the postseason to determine which player is most important to his club. This is due to the NHL president awarding the Conn Smythe to the MVP chosen by the PHWA after the playoff finals, just before the Stanley Cup is given to the playoff champion.

The NHL began disclosing the poll results of the vote done by the PHWA during the 2017 season after initially just the names of the finalists were made public.

Conn Smythe Trophy Winners

Conn Smythe award Winners

The Conn Smythe trophy has had many winners over the years since its first award in the 1964-65 season. Since it is awarded annually with every playoff season, it has been awarded 58 times with the  2022-23 season, making it the 58th time. 

Unlike the Calder Trophy given to the Rookie of the Year, the Conn Smythe trophy can be won repeatedly by a player as long as he is deemed to be the best player in the playoffs. In addition, the means of ranking the players in the poll is a 5-3-1 point system.

How this work is done by this means:

  • The first pick for a member of the PHWA gets 5-point
  • The second pick gets 3-points 
  • Finally, the third pick gets 1-point

Therefore, in this section, we will be looking at the NHL players who have won the most Conn Smyth trophies in the NHL, along with the NHL teams with the most Conn Smythe trophy winners in the league. 

NHL Players With Most Conn Smythe Trophies

The Conn Smythe Trophy has only been won a maximum of three times by a player, and Patrick Roy is the only player to have accomplished this feat. When talking about the best goaltender to have ever competed in the NHL, Patrick Roy is a name that comes to mind.

He was the goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens and Colorado Avalanche. He competed in the NHL for 19 years, spending 11 of those years with the Montreal Canadiens and 9 with the Colorado Avalanche, where he won two Stanley Cups.

During the 1985–86 and 1992–93 seasons, he also won two Conn Smythes with the Canadiens. The Colorado Avalanche was the team that he ultimately earned his final Conn Smythe with.

SeasonTeam
1985-86Montreal Canadiens 
1992-93Montreal Canadiens
2000-01Colorado Avalanche 

Other players who have two Conn Smythe trophies include Wayne Gretzky, Sidney Crosby, Bobby Orr, Bernie Parent, and Mario Lemieux

NHL Teams With Most Conn Smythe Winners

NHL teams with most Conn Smythe

The Montreal Canadiens are the NHL franchise with the most Conn Smythe Trophy winners. As of the 2022-23 season, nine Conn Smythe trophies have been awarded to eight players in the franchise. The Canadiens had their last two championships (their last two Conn Smythe) while Patrick Roy was a member of the team.

With five trophies each, the Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings are second only to the Canadiens in terms of trophy count. The NHL teams’ trophy standings are displayed in the table below.

NoNHL Team No. Of Conn Smythe
1Montreal Canadiens 9
2Pittsburgh Penguins 5
3Detriot Red Wings 5
4Edmonton Oilers4
5Colorado Avalanche3
6Los Angeles Kings2
7Chicago Blackhawks 3
8Philadephia Flyers 4
9Boston Bruins 3
10New York Rangers 1
11New York Islanders 4
12Tampa Bay Lightning 3
13Calgary Flames 1
14New Jersey Devils 2
15Washington Capitals 1
16Dallas Stars 1
17Toronto Maple Leafs 1
18St Louis Blues2
19Mighty Ducks of Anaheim1
20Anaheim Ducks1
21Vegas Golden Knight 1
22Carolina Hurricanes 1
Total58
Data compiled by Cleatshub.com. Source

Conn Smythe Trophy Winners By Year 

Conn Smythe winners by year

MVP of The Playoffs For The 2019-20  Season

The winner of the Conn Symthe as the most valuable player for the 2019-20 season is Ryan O’Reilly. Of the 18 members of the PHWA that took part in the poll to decide the MVP of the playoffs:

  • 13 voted Ryan O’Reilly as their place pick
  • 4 voted him as their second-place pick
  • And 1 as his third-place pick

In the end, it sums up to 78 points for him, making him emerge as the MVP of the playoffs. The table below shows the poll results for the 2019–20 Conn Smythe poll.

Players First Place VoteSecond Place VoteThird Place VoteTotal
Ryan O’Reilly134178
Jordan Binnington55646
Tuukka Rask04921
Alex Pietrangelo03110
Colton Parayko0217

MVP of The Playoffs For The 2020-21  Season

For the 2020-21 season, Andri Vasilevskiy was announced as the winner of the Conn Smythe. During the poll, he had a total of 15 first-place votes out of the 18 members that voted. In addition, he recorded two second-place rankings and one third-place win.

Players First Place VoteSecond Place VoteThird Place VoteTotal
Andrei Vasilevskiy152182
Nikita Kucherov315060
Brayden Point011316
Ryan McDonagh0033
Carey Price0011

MVP of The Playoffs For The 2021-22  Season

The poll of the Conn Smythe for the 2021-22 season saw a unanimous vote for Cale Makar of the Colorado Avalanche as the number one pick. This is because of the 18 members who voted, there was no one who picked any player aside from Makar as their first-place pick.

Eventually, Cale won the poll with 90 points, leaving the first runner-up, Nathan MacKinnon, with 47 points.

Players First Place VoteSecond Place VoteThird Place VoteTotal
Cale Makar180090
Nathan MacKinnon015247
Mikko Rantanen0217
Nazem Kadri0103
Andrei Vasilevskiy0044
Ondrej Palat0033
Steven Stamkos0033
Valeri Nichushkin0033
Gabriel Landeskog0022

MVP of The Playoffs For The 2022-23  Season 

The playoffs for the 2022-23 season saw Jonathan Marchessault as the winner of the trophy. He won the poll with 13 first-place votes and 5 second-place votes. He is also the first player from the Las Vegas Golden Knights to win the trophy. 

Next to him is Jack Eichel, who had five first-place picks, 10 second-place picks, and one third-place pick. 

Players First Place VoteSecond Place VoteThird Place VoteTotal
Jonathan Marchessault135080
Jack Eichel510156
Adin Hill03817
Mark Stone0088
Matthew Tkachuk0011

Facts About The Conn Smythe Trophy

Here are some facts that you may not have known about the Conn Smythe Trophy.

  • The first player to win the trophy was Jean Beliveau of the Montreal Canadiens
  • The only player to win it three times is Patrick Roy
  • Bobby Orr is the first defenseman and NHL player to win the trophy twice
  • He is also the only defenseman to win it twice
  • Patrick Roy won his three trophies in three different decades (1985-86, 1992-93, and 2000-01)
  • The only player from the Toronto Maple Leaf (the franchise that saw to the donation of the trophy) to win the Conn Smythe is Dave Keon
  • 22 NHL teams have won the Conn Smythe since its inception. However, only 21 of these franchises are still playing in the NHL
  • 11 NHL teams have yet to record a Conn Smythe winner
  • The ice hockey position with the most Conn Smythe trophies is the Center position, with 19 awards given to center players

Conclusion

This concludes our discussion on the NHL’s Conn Smythe Award. It’s vital to remember that athletes who take home the Conn Smythe trophy play for NHL teams that advance all the way to the NHL Playoffs’ championship game.

Related Post: The Art Ross Trophy – Award For NHL Point Leader

The choice is typically between the players who are playing in the last game of the playoff season because the voting is done by the PHWA 10 minutes before the completion of the playoff game.

Thanks for reading.

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