Editorials

20 Hart Trophy Candidates

By Mike Brennan
Jan 17, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) scores a goal on Montreal Canadiens goalie Ben Scrivens (40) during the third period at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 17, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks right wing Patrick Kane (88) scores a goal on Montreal Canadiens goalie Ben Scrivens (40) during the third period at the United Center. The Chicago Blackhawks won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports /
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hart trophy
Jan 24, 2016; Raleigh, NC, USA; Calgary Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau (13) watches the play against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Hurricanes defeated the Flames 5-2. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 12: Johnny Gaudreau, LW, Calgary Flames

Johnny Hockey up in Calgary is one of the best young players the league has. In his second full season with the Flames, he has 46 points on 20 goals and 26 assists. He is a pure offensive player in a very small body. So, that small body makes him a fantastic skater and allows him to out-skate most players to get to a puck. Of all the young players out there in the NHL, he is probably top-five in terms of excitement, which has given him his nickname “Johnny Hockey.”

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The couple downsides of his game are below-average to average possession numbers and his size (5-foot-9, 150 pounds). In order to become one of the absolute best players in the league, he will need to find a way to overcome this shortcoming. He clearly has been able to do that this season. He averages more than 20 minutes of ice time a night and around 15 percent in shooting percentage. However it will be interesting to see if he can continue to put up fantastic offensive numbers in the seasons to come. It will likely leave him in the discussion for future Hart Trophy honors — maybe further up the list.

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