With last weekend’s all-star activities in the books, and the NHL teams, players and fans alike getting ready for the stretch run of the 2015-2016 NHL regular season, now is a good time as any to look at who deserves the midseason MVP.
For me, when looking at the stats and what players had the biggest impact for their team this season, one of the guys I considered was Dallas Star’s powerful left winger Jamie Benn.
Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby, who has been terrorizing his opponents these past few weeks, but neither Crosby nor Benn are able to compare to the season of one right winger who plays for the Chicago Blackhawks Patrick Kane.
He has been far superior to all other NHL players in scoring this season with an outstanding 76 total points in 57 games this season.
He has led all players this season with 1.36 points per game: next closest to him is Benn, who is averaging 1.11 points per game.
Kane currently holds a 15 point lead over Benn in the race for the Art Ross trophy which was won by Benn last year.
His season has been a breakout one in many ways.
Kane has been a consistent top 15-20 player in the NHL ever since he entered the league as a 19-year-old back in the 2007-2008 NHL season.
This year he has stepped up to an entire new level and emerge as arguably the best hockey player in the entire world.
Kane is not only talented, but he is becoming one of the best Americans to ever lace a pair of ice skates.
This past offseason, there were allegations by a woman in Buffalo.
This was a very difficult time for Kane as the story was national and seemed to be on the front page of every newspaper for weeks on end.
The accusation made Kane miss training camp and had his morals and reputation questioned until it came out that the accusation was false.
It seems Kane has used his unusual offseason as some added motivation, as he already has 32 goals.
Kane also ranks second in the NHL with 44 assists, only trailing the premier Ottawa Senators Swedish defensemen Erik Karlsson.
He is also among the leaders this season in the plus/minus category ranking 5th with +22 behind Detroit Red Wings forward Dylan Larkin, Pittsburgh Penguin winger Chris Kunitz, Washington Capital’s winger Evgeny Kuznetsov and Los Angeles King’s forward Tyler Toffoli.
Earlier this season, Kane had a 26-game point streak the longest streak in the NHL in over two decades.
Another statistic that helps put in perspective how tremendous of a season Kane is having is that he already has 76 points with 30 games left this season, while last season Benn won the Art Ross with a total of 87 points.
Kane is on pace right now to end up with 111 points this season, which would be the most by a player in the league since the Vancouver Canuck’s Henrik Sedin in the 2009-2010 season.