Welcome to the Second annual Puck Under the Sun’s Annual Panther MVP. I last did one of these in my first week on this site when I named Jaromir Jagr the Florida Panthers team MVP for 2015-16 according to me. I was planning on doing this article on April 10th but my pick has been lighting it up this year and there is no competition in my opinion for this player.
You might be asking how I select the Panthers MVP? Is it by most points? No. It is the player I feel has played their hearts out and really gave it their all out there. The player is normally someone high on the point list. I select the MVP on several things mainly stats but I also factor in age, history and several other categories.
This player went undrafted because he was too small. However he never gave up. When he got to the NHL, he wasn’t given a full time role. When the Panthers signed him they gave him a chance. When several players went down with injuries he stepped up in a big way. He has scored several goals this year.
Jonathan Marchessault is the Panthers MVP of the year. Marchessault had 8 career goals before coming to Florida. Many had him slotted on the fourth line to start the year. He outplayed Jared McCann and earned a spot on the third line. When Jonathan Huberdeau went down, Marchessault joined the top line. Marchessault has bounced around the lineup. He is the team’s best pure goal scorer. He had his first career hat trick last night. Without him, we probably would’ve been eliminated before Huberdeau and Barkov returned. He was the twelfth forward in Tampa. He is now the seventh forward on the team ahead of Nick Bjugstad and Tomas Vanek. He leads the team in goals with 28. He has 48 points. He has also been gritty and will take on any opponent. He has done very well on the lackluster powerplay. While he is the one who has to serve penalties for players who can’t go to the box for some reason, he never complains and when he gets out he normally helps start a rush. He was the third star of the month of October. I think Marchessault should be nominated for the Masterton trophy for perservance. He has done so well this year. It wasn’t even close.
Runner-Ups: Vincent Trocheck, Aleksander Barkov and James Reimer
2015-16: Jaromir Jagr
2016-17: Jonathan Marchessault