Lets just be real for a second here.
If you’re a great player you have a much better chance at being a fan favorite for a franchise or fan base. If you’re one of the top two or three players on a team, odds are you are probably widely loved by the fans and now considered a fan favorite.
That doesn’t mean you HAVE to be a top player. Look no further than D.C. when talking about a lower line player being loved. Jay Beagle. Nothing more than a fourth liner. He was loved by the fans, and rightly so. You could also point to the entire fourth line of the Capitals right now, although not as loved individually as Mr. Beagle was.
Still, the fan favorites usually are reserved for top players. That’s what Evgeny Kuznetsov is. A top player for this Washington Capitals team and in my opinion, if he wanted to be, a top player in the entire National Hockey League.
If Kuznetsov wasn’t a top player would he be a fan favorite? If he did everything he does now but isn’t nearly a point per game player is he as loved as he is? It’s hard to say. It’s really hard to throw everything out of your memory box and give honest answers like that.
What else makes Kuznetsov a fan favorite? Well, I guess we can take a look at a couple of things.