by PuckStopsHere on 06/18/13 at 12:44 AM ET
Chicago's offence seems to have dried up. They haven't scored a goal since the first period of game two. This was the highest scoring team in the West Conference this season. It appears that their best scorers are hurt or injured. Marian Hossa missed game three as a late scratch. Neither Jonathan Toews nor Patrick Kane have looked like the stars they usually look like. I believe this is because both are playing hurt. If Chicago cannot get top performances from any of those three players, they are really in a tough situation.
I think this is a direct result of the travel that Chicago had in the "hurry up" shortened schedule. While Boston has only left their time zone to play Winnipeg and to play in the Stanley Cup finals, Chicago has been travelling all over all four time zones the NHL covers all season long.
Tuukka Rask has been the best player in the finals without any clear rival. I argue that David Krejci has been the best player in the playoffs, but I cannot make much argument for him being a standout in the finals (at least not yet). I think that makes Rask the Conn Smythe favorite at this point even though Krejci has been the playoff MVP. The voting media members have short attention spans and may not have bothered to watch Boston in the early playoff rounds. Officially the Conn Smythe goes to the most valuable player in the playoffs. It would be interesting to see a player win it who didn't make the finals (after all players have won the playoff scoring race without making the finals). I cannot imagine the voters letting that happen even if it was deserved. If there is a clear MVP in the finals, he gets the Conn Smythe even if someone else deserves it in the other three rounds.
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