The 2022-23 NHL season might just be a month old, but we already have seen enough of some players to make some predictions, like who could potentially take home the Hart Trophy at the end of the year.
According to the NHL, each season the Hart Trophy is awarded “to the player adjudged to be the most valuable to his team.” During the past few seasons, the award was given to Auston Matthews, Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and Nikita Kucherov to name a few. With Matthews taking the trophy home last season, I think someone else could have it at the end of this year.
Three early picks to win the Hart Trophy from across the NHL
1. Connor McDavid
Connor McDavid has to be the first player mentioned on this list. He is the only active player who has won the award multiple times and he leads the entire league in points and goals with nine goals and 18 points. McDavid is a big reason for the success of the Edmonton Oilers so far this season as he has two hat tricks on the year.
2. David Pastrnak
Next up has to be David Pastrnak of the Boston Bruins. The Bruins were supposed to not be this good in 2022-23. The core was another year older, and with so many young teams looking to take a step up in the standings, it looked like Boston could be the odd team out. Yet here we are with Boston having just one loss at the end of October and David Pastrnak leading the charge with seven goals and 16 points.
3. Steven Stamkos
Finally, we get to Steven Stamkos, the captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tampa Bay has not been as exhilarating as in years pasts to start the new season. But I do not think that is an issue for them, as all they care about is getting back into the playoffs.
In past seasons Nikita Kucherov, Brayden Point or Victor Hedman have gotten a lot of attention and praise for the Lightning’s success. I think this year is the year of Stamkos in Tampa Bay. With seven goals in the first nine games for Tampa Bay, I think he has an early chance to be considered for the Hart Trophy, he is very valuable to the team.
With just one month in the books, there definitely will be other players who get their name thrown into the Hart conversation by the end of the season. It will be interesting to see who ends up up taking it when all is said and done.