The Conn Smythe Trophy is awarded annually to the player judged most valuable to his team during the playoffs, as selected by the Professional Hockey Writers Association (PHWA). Being hockey fans as well as writers, the PHWA can sometimes get swept up in a particularly inspiring story from the final series and overlook the player who best fits the award's defined criteria. Who have been history's greatest oversights?
To answer that question I took advantage of the data recently compiled for a Bleacher Report article that identified the necessary ingredients for Conn Smythe winners. That included a wide variety of analytic data on the thousands of players and goalies to contend for the trophy in its almost 50-year existence.
Using that information, I have identified what were in my opinion the 10 leading potential oversights and built the case for the snub by comparing him with the chosen selection.
This was a highly subjective exercise with a lot of near misses, leaving plenty of room for other opinions, so please be sure to weigh in and be generous with your comments. Let's begin!
All playoff data is source from Hockey Reference, and all other advanced statistics are via writer's own original research unless otherwise noted.