The National Hockey League announced this evening that Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon is the recipient of the 2014 Calder Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s rookie of the year.
MacKinnon received 1347 votes, besting Tampa Bay forwards Ondrej Palat (791) and Tyler Johnson (352). The Calder Trophy, which dates back to 1933, is awarded “to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the National Hockey League.” The winner is chosen by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association in a poll at the end of the regular-season schedule. The announcement came tonight during the 2014 NHL Awards in Las Vegas.
MacKinnon, who was 18 years, 224 days at the end of regular season, is the youngest player to ever win the Calder Trophy. The previous record holder was Carolina’s Jeff Skinner in 2010-11 (18 years, 329 days).
MacKinnon is the third in Avalanche history to win the Calder Trophy, joining Chris Drury (1998-99) and Gabriel Landeskog (2011-12). He is the fifth player in the 34-year history of the Avalanche/Nordiques franchise to capture rookie of the year honors, joining Peter Stastny (1980-81), Peter Forsberg (1994-95), Drury and Landeskog. Since the Quebec Nordiques entered the league in 1979-80 no other NHL franchise has had five Calder Trophy winners.
MacKinnon led all NHL rookies this season in points (63), goals (24-tied), assists (39), power-play goals (8), game-winning goals (5-tied), shots (241) and games played (82-tied). He is the first player to lead all rookies in goals, assists and points since Evgeni Malkin in 2006-07. MacKinnon’s 63 points equaled the most of any NHL rookie over the last five seasons, matching Skinner’s total from 2010-11. He was one of only two Avs to appear in every game and one of only three NHL rookies to dress in all 82 contests. He led the Avalanche in shots, ranked second in assists (tied), plus/minus (+20) and PPG and finished fourth in goals and points. He was the first NHL rookie to surpass 60 points with a plus/minus rating of +20 or better since 1992-93 (Joe Juneau, Eric Lindros, Shawn McEachern).
MacKinnon compiled a 13-game point streak from Jan. 25 to March 6, which is the longest streak by an 18-year-old in NHL history. He topped Wayne Gretzky's record of 12 straight games with a point, set from Dec. 9, 1979 to Jan. 5, 1980. The youngest player in franchise history when he made his debut on Oct. 2 (18 years, 31 days), MacKinnon had two points that night to become the youngest NHL player to record two or more points in a game since 1944. He later became the youngest player in league history to record consecutive multi-goal games (18 years, 127 days) when he scored twice in back-to-back games Jan. 4 and 6.
MacKinnon went on to share the Avalanche lead in playoff scoring with 10 points (2g/8a) in seven postseason contests. He tied the NHL record for most points in the first two playoff games of a career with seven, which included three assists in his playoff debut April 17. He is the only rookie to ever record three assists in his postseason debut, and he also scored the overtime winner in Game 5 vs. Minnesota on April 26, becoming the second-youngest player in Stanley Cup Playoff history to score an OT goal (18 years, 237 days).
In addition to his Calder Trophy honors, MacKinnon tonight was also named to the 2013-14 NHL All-Rookie Team. He is the ninth player in franchise history—and seventh in Avalanche history—to be selected to the NHL All-Rookie Team, joining Bruce Bell in 1984-85, Forsberg in 1994-95, Drury and Milan Hejduk in 1998-99, John-Michael Liles in 2003-04, Paul Stastny in 2006-07, Matt Duchene in 2009-10 and Gabriel Landeskog in 2011-12. The rookie all-star team began in 1982-83.
1. Nathan MacKinnon, COL 1347 (130-6-1-0-0)
2. Ondrej Palat, TB 791 (5-78-29-15-5)
3. Tyler Johnson, TB 352 (0-13-29-30-26)
4. Torey Krug, BOS 287 (1-9-23-25-24)
5. Olli Maatta, PIT 225 (0-11-18-16-10)
6. Jacob Trouba, WPG 213 (1-11-17-9-14)
7. Hampus Lindholm, ANA 208 (0-7-15-22-18)
8. Sean Monahan, CGY 38 (0-2-2-3-5)
9. Frederik Andersen, ANA 25 (0-0-0-4-13)
10. Chris Kreider, NYR 20 (0-0-1-3-6)
11. Seth Jones, NSH 15 (0-0-0-4-3)
12. Valeri Nichushkin, DAL 14 (0-0-0-3-5)
13. Nick Bjugstad, FLA 9 (0-0-1-1-1)
14. Tomas Hertl, SJ 8 (0-0-1-1-0)
15. Danny DeKeyser, DET 5 (0-0-0-1-2)
16. Aleksander Barkov, FLA 1 (0-0-0-0-1)
Boone Jenner, CBJ 1 (0-0-0-0-1)
Martin Jones, LA 1 (0-0-0-0-1)
Darcy Kuemper, MIN 1 (0-0-0-0-1)
Eddie Lack, VAN 1 (0-0-0-0-1)
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