Alexander Ovechkin Should Win Conn Smythe, Playoff MVP

Craig Garrison SrSenior Analyst IApril 14, 2008

Ovechkin is already on his way to winning the Conn Smythe trophy.

Think about it, the Flyers tried to pound him out of the game, attempting to keep him out of the play throughout game one of the Eastern Conference quarter finals. But it didn't matter.

When it counted most and his team needed someone to step up and MAKE a play, he did. The team around Alex had played well up to that point, but it certainly looked as if the Flyers strategy of physically denying Ovechkin the puck just might work. Until his goal, he hadn't even taken a shot on goal. And his goal came with only about four and a half minutes to play in the third period.

One can certainly argue that his play in Game Two was mediocre at best, the entire team seemed to be in a funk. There seemed to be no energy from the Caps at all. And boy did it show. The Flyers played with more urgency than the Caps, and it got them the win in Game two. 

But once he scored in Game One, the Flyers seemed to collapse under their own weight. They couldn't rally passed it. They tried. But there was nothing left.

If nothing else, Ovechkin showed all of us that he is much more than just a very talented guy. He also has heart and tenacity. A passion for the game and his teammates that at this point in the game seems quite unrivaled. Don't get me wrong, he is not alone in this, the NHL has come across a collection of players that bring to the game some personality. Personality the game has not had in a long time. And the Flyers embodied that in Game Two.

If you were not impressed by his record setting scoring output this season, then maybe you won't be impressed by his efforts in game one against the Philadelphia Flyers either. But you will be missing something if you don't watch, and you know it.

The playoff MVP is for the player most valuable to his team through the playoffs. Ovechkin has lifted his own play to another level. With Federov and Huet, he knows he is not alone on the ice, ever. And the rest of the team is figuring out that they can play too. And now they can WIN!

Ovechkin is on his way to his first Stanley Cup(yes the Caps will make it) and his first MVP award. Considering how long the Caps have wallowed around, this is a GOOD THING. Game Two will serve as the "wake up call" that Ovechkin and the Caps need.

Expect them to take back home ice on Tuesday, and win Game Three. And Ovechkin will continue on his path to the 2008 Conn Smythe Trophy.