<
>
Get ESPN+

What's next for the top NHL players of 2017?

Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid both had amazing calendar years of 2017. Who will have a better 2018? Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Who was the 2017 player of the year? Popular opinion appears to be evenly divided between Tampa Bay's Nikita Kucherov, Edmonton's Connor McDavid and Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby.

In the regular season -- part of which was in 2016-17 and the remainder in 2017-18 -- Kucherov led in scoring with 52 goals and 106 points, and the Tampa Bay Lightning earned 110 points in the standings, which ranked second to the Washington Capitals, at 122.

While not enjoying the same level of team success, McDavid won the NHL scoring race, the Hart Trophy, was a first-team All-Star, finished second to Kucherov in regular season points in that span, with 102, and first when playoff points are included, with 111.

Of course, the Stanley Cup is the ultimate prize, and Crosby was the captain of the champion Pittsburgh Penguins, won the Conn Smythe Trophy, the Maurice Richard Trophy, and finished second to McDavid in combined scoring, with 110 points.

While some of these achievements can't have numbers placed on them, let's dive into some of the underlying stats and break down their impressive years, see if that will help clarify which one was best, and establish what we might expect from each of them in 2018.