Traditionally, there have been a few things that consistently hurt the chances of Hart Trophy candidates. One is being a good player on a non-playoff team. For instance, in the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season, Steven Stamkos was second in the league with 29 goals in 48 games. His 57 points trailed only teammate Martin St. Louis among league leaders. He finished eighth in the Hart vote in large part because the Lightning were one of the worst teams in the league.
Miss the playoffs and chances are, you’re left off the ballot. That impacts guys like Jakub Voracek, Tyler Seguin and Claude Giroux -- all having big seasons on teams that are more likely to miss the postseason than make it.
Another factor is when teammates split votes. Jonathan Toews is consistently one of the best players in the league on one of the best teams. The highest he’s ever finished in Hart voting is fourth. That could be because Patrick Kane is siphoning votes. The year Toews finished fourth (2012-13), Kane finished sixth.
But there's no bigger sin than being a goalie. Perhaps it’s because of the existence of the Vezina Trophy (perhaps like the Cy Young in MLB) but it’s been since Jose Theodore won it in 2002 that a goalie has taken home the Hart.
This year is shaping up to be different. Let’s say