Connor McDavid wins Conn Smythe despite Oilers' loss

League: NHL

Posted on: 25 Jun, 2024 at 05:46 AM

Credit: Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports

Connor McDavid didn't end up with the trophy he wanted to lift on Monday -- the Stanley Cup -- but the Edmonton Oilers captain still received a consolation prize.

After the Oilers fell 2-1 to the Florida Panthers in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final at Sunrise, Fla., McDavid was selected the winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy, given annually to the most valuable player of the postseason.

McDavid became just the sixth player ever to receive the Conn Smythe without playing for the Cup-winning team. He joins Reggie Leach (1976 Philadelphia Flyers) as the only skaters in that category.

Goalies Roger Crozier (1966 Detroit Red Wings), Glenn Hall (1968 St. Louis Blues), Ron Hextall (1987 Flyers) and Jean-Sebastien Giguere (2003 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim) also received the Conn Smythe in defeat.

"I guess an honor with the names on that trophy, but ..." McDavid said, not finishing the sentence.

McDavid wound up leading all players in the 2024 postseason with 42 points, including a league-high 34 assists. The only players ever to produce more points in a single playoff run were Wayne Gretzky (47 for the 1985 Oilers, 43 for the 1988 Oilers) and Mario Lemieux (44 for the 1991 Pittsburgh Penguins).

Edmonton teammate Leon Draisaitl said of McDavid, "I don't think he cares (about the Conn Smythe). It speaks to how amazing of a hockey player he is. But no player in the world that wants to win a Stanley Cup more than him. He does everything right every single day just to win it one day. It's really hard, especially him being sad, being disappointed at the end."

The Panthers led the best-of-seven finals three games to none as they held McDavid to no goals and a total of three assists in those contests. The Oilers rallied to force a Game 7 thanks in large part to McDavid.

In Games 3 and 4, he became the first player in NHL history to log consecutive four-point games in a Stanley Cup final. He totaled three goals and five assists in those contests.

However, he was held without a point in Game 6, when Edmonton won 5-1, and then again in Game 7.

McDavid said of the decisive defeat, "It's tough. They did a good job of shutting things down. We had our looks, just didn't find it."

--Field Level Media