I know there has been a lot of talk about Henrik Lundqvist being a potential MVP candidate this season with the amazing numbers he's putting up, but I believe there is another player who could easily win the honour. Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin had himself another whale of a day at the office yesterday as the Penguins trounced the Lightning by an 8-1 score. As you can see in the image, the ice was littered with hats after he put away three more goals, but HBIC wants to look at another highlight reel moment that Malkin created yesterday to add to his growing resumé from this season.
In a previous post, I had included goals by the aforementioned Malkin, Matt Duchene, Mike Ribeiro, and Mika Zibanejad as possible "Goal of the Year" candidates, but Evgeni Malkin's tally against the Lightning might have been the greatest individual effort this season to date. Here's the video.
Malkin has willed the Penguins to wins in the past, but you can see how much fun he is actually having. The surgery and rehab to get his torn ACL and MCL back into game shape not only has him looking stronger than ever, but the commitment made by Malkin this summer has made him a better athlete.
Back in the summer, Pavel Lysenkov of Sovetsky Sport spoke to Evgeni Malkin's father who said, "Evgeni is seriously focused. I am not even sure he will vacation somewhere this summer. He wants to approach the start of the NHL season in top form."
Considering the season that Malkin is putting together, I'd say he reached that goal, and is now pushing the bar higher. The only question that remains is how high will that bar be pushed?
Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!