Here is the journey that led Justin Williams to his third Stanley Cup and first Conn Smythe Trophy.
Williams, 32, is a native of Cobourg, ON, Canada.
He began his career in 1997 spending it with the Colborne Colts-OHA-C, Cobourg Cougars-OPJHL, and Plymouth Whalers-OHL until he was the first round 28th overall draft pick in 2000 by the Philadeplohia Flyers.
During his time with the Flyers he also played for Canada-WC-A. Williams was then traded to the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2003-04 season. During his time there he also played for the Canada-WC-A again and Lulea HF-Sweden (during NHL lockout). In 2006 he won his first ever Stanley Cup with the Hurricanes.
In 2004 and 2007 he won the gold medal for the World Championship, representing Team Canada.
In 2008 he was traded to the Kings. With his veteran experience he brought a lot to the teams dynamic even though he had many injuries that led him to take some time off. He helped the Kings reach the franchise’s first Stanley Cup in 2012, but it was their second Cup in 2014 where he really shined like the star he is.He didn’t just get his third career Stanley Cup, but his first career Conn Smythe, for the most valuable player.
“I can’t believe I won that,” Justin Williams said as he sat at the press conference podium with his son Jaxon in his lap. “That will, I don’t think, ever, ever sink in.”
It’s not every player that stays humble about their talents, and it’s not every player that gets the Conn Smythe. This year it was given to Los Angeles Kings, #14, Willie, Stick, JWill, Mr. Game 7, humble and fearless, Justin Williams.
“I don’t do anything flashy out there,” said Williams. “I’m not the fastest skater. I don’t have the greatest shot. I just try and do the best I can out there with what I have. I feel my smarts and my instincts have gotten me where I am, and my competitiveness.”
During the regular season Williams doesn’t disappoint, but for some reason during the postseason, or big stage as he refers to it, he comes alive and performs like a true MVP.
He deserved the Conn Smythe for many reasons, but mostly his entire postseason success.
After facing elimination against the San Jose Sharks, Williams scored twice in Game 4 to keep the series alive. Williams tied Wayne Gretzky for a second all-time with his sixth career Game 7 goal , after he scored a power play goal in Game 7 against the Anaheim Ducks at Honda Center. Against the Chicago Blackhawks he scored in Game 2 and 7 to send the Kings to the Stanley Cup Final. During the Cup Final against the Rangers he scored the Game 1 overtime goal and the first goal in Game 5.
Williams truly represents the Kings run to their victory: hard work, strength, resilience, patience, and timely goals. People say players out West who don’t get that much attention are underrated, but how can Williams any longer be underrated with this kind of stats and success.
He had a total of 25 points in 26 games in the postseason. He had seven points in the Stanley Cup Final. He improved his record of Game 7’s to 7-0, with 14 goals, seven goals, seven assists.
Williams truly represent the Kings run to their victory: hard work, strength, resilience, patience, and timely goals. People say players out West who don’t get that much attention are underrated, but how can Williams any longer be underrated with this kind of stats and success.
In 837 regular season games he has recorded 209 goals and 332 assists, a plus-84 rating, 545 penalty minutes, 49 power play goals, and 26 game winning goals.
In 115 playoff contests he has 30 goals and 48 assists, a plus-32 rating, 105 penalty minutes, five power play goals and six game winning goals.
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