Penguins' Malkin Takes Home Conn Smythe

Article excerpt

Evgeni Malkin has the MVP that matters most.

For leading the playoffs in points -- and the Penguins to the Stanley Cup with a 2-1 win on Friday at Detroit -- Malkin earned the Conn Smythe Trophy as the postseason Most Valuable Player.

His 36 points were the most since 1993, and only former center and Hall-of-Famer Mario Lemieux has recorded more in one playoff season for the Penguins.

"You don't like to make that comparison, but you watch 'Geno' play and it reminds you a lot of Mario," Penguins defenseman Philippe Boucher said. "They both are so big, so skilled, so strong on the puck, and they can win games by themselves."

Malkin, a two-time finalist for the Hart Trophy as regular- season MVP at only 22, has won a lot of games by himself for the Penguins since his debut in 2006.

He won his first Art Ross Trophy as scoring champion this season, and is the first player since Lemieux in 1992 to lead the NHL in regular-season and postseason points. …