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Connor McDavid deserved that Stanley Cup
Credit: Getty Images

It’s done, the Panthers have won the Stanley Cup. Despite Connor McDavid’s best hopes, the Oilers were unable to bring the Stanley Cup back to Canada for the first time in 31 years.

And what happened was sad, especially for McDavid, who had one of the best playoff performances in history.

8 goals and 34 assists for a total of 42 points in 25 playoff games is unprecedented since Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux.

Of course, his work has been recognized: he won the Conn Smythe Trophy. But that’s not enough. McDavid deserved to win the Stanley Cup.

Panthers fans booed when Gary Bettman announced that the Conn Smythe Trophy was going to Connor McDavid. They probably wanted it to go to Sergei Bobrovsky.

McDavid didn’t care about the trophy. He didn’t even return to the ice to collect it as the sixth player in history to win it in a losing cause. He acted like someone who thinks he didn’t do enough to help his team.

However, the opposite was true. Even though he didn’t collect a point in games six and seven, McDavid was at every opportunity, tiring the Panthers’ players, creating dangerous scoring opportunities and giving his team a chance to win.

Strange to say, McDavid was the only Oilers player who deserved that Stanley Cup. Leon Draisaitl didn’t play like a winner in the final. Nor did Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Evan Bouchard and company.

The three victorious games were all McDavid’s doing. Four points in each of games four and five was simply incredible. The Oilers captain gave his heart and soul to get his hands on the trophy and silence his detractors.

However, we’ll have to wait a little longer to see the best player of his generation confirm his reign with a Stanley Cup.

But since he hasn’t won the top honors, McDavid will still be laughed at by many detractors who will accuse him of being a player who lacks leadership and isn’t capable of guiding a team to the end.

What’s even crazier is that McDavid didn’t talk about his own performance during the post-game interviews. He kept to his role as captain in fine style, congratulating his teammates and talking about the good job his team has done this season.

Replace McDavid with any other player in the NHL, be it Sidney Crosby, Nathan MacKinnon or Nikita Kucherov, and I don’t think the Oilers would have made it past the second round against the Canucks.

In Draisaitl’s eyes, McDavid is the best player ever to set foot on an NHL ice rink.

McDavid deserves a better team. With the right team, he could lead one of the greatest dynasties in modern hockey.

Overtime

– A dynasty in the AHL.

– A great story.

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