With the Stanley Cup Playoffs set to begin Saturday, we rank the top 30 players who will compete for the ultimate prize (2020-21 stats in tables):
Vasilevskiy is the clear Vezina Trophy front-runner. He even deserves to be on the periphery of the Hart Trophy race thanks to his stellar play this season. The Lightning goaltender's dominance has been critical to the success of a club that's missed stars all season (Nikita Kucherov) and down the stretch (Steven Stamkos).
Marner has put together the most dominant season of his career, carving up the North Division night in and night out. His playmaking abilities are second to none, and he's even scored goals at a higher-than-normal clip. Marner and Auston Matthews have established themselves as one of the league's most dominant duos, and they'll look to make their mark this postseason.
Stone is entering the playoffs on the heels of the most productive campaign (1.11 points per game) of his 10-year career. The two-way force plays with unmatched intensity, and his hockey IQ in both ends of the rink makes him one of the NHL's most consistent players. If Vegas lives up to expectations and goes on a deep run, Stone will surely be in the running for the Conn Smythe.
Barkov, one of the game's top defensive forwards, has developed into a premier sniper. The Panthers captain eclipsed his 2019-20 goal total by six in 16 fewer outings this season and was on pace for a career-best 42 tallies over 82 games. With Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau leading the charge, the Cats are serious contenders this spring.
Hedman may have piled up points this season, but he had a down year - by his standards. He's reportedly played through a lower-body injury, which will require offseason surgery, since the beginning of April. This clearly limited his effectiveness down the stretch and could do the same in the playoffs.
Nonetheless, as the reigning Conn Smythe winner, Hedman deserves a high spot on this list. He can carry a team on his back - when he's right.
Draisaitl has taken a back seat this season to the No. 1 player on this list, but don't forget how potent the reigning Hart Trophy winner is. He's still among the league leaders in terms of offensive production, and he's nearly as dangerous as his otherworldly teammate.
Crosby put together yet another fantastic season, helping drag the injury-riddled Penguins to the East Division's top seed. Since 2008, nobody in the league has played more postseason games or put up more playoff points than the 33-year-old. With his career starting to dwindle down, it's possible this is one of the final times we'll see a truly dominant Crosby gunning for another title.
Matthews should be a shoo-in to earn a Hart Trophy nomination after solidifying his place among the game's elite with a whopping 0.79 goals per game this season. With him leading the way for the Maple Leafs, it feels like this is the year the club finally makes some postseason noise.
MacKinnon plays with a unique ferocity that makes him stand out among his peers. He's the ultimate competitor and his tireless engine, combined with a skill level unmatched by most, makes him one of the most enjoyable players to watch on a nightly basis. This could be the year where MacKinnon and the Avalanche break through.
Were you expecting anyone else? McDavid had arguably the most dominant individual season since Mario Lemieux in 1995-96, and he should be the unanimous Hart Trophy winner. That's enough for the top spot on this list.