The Calder Trophy
05 Dec
Not in Hall of Fame

The National Hockey League has been ahead of the curve regarding creating individual awards, and they were the first of the major sports to have a dedicated trophy for the Rookie of the Year.  

Named after Frank Calder, the NHL's first President and the incumbent when the award was first issued in 1937, but that was the debut of that trophy.  The NHL began Rookie of the Year accolades in 1933, which we include in our piece.  It is voted on by members of the Professional Hockey Writer's Association. 

In hockey, we will see that winning the Calder does not mean that you are an automatic legend.  There is first ballot Hall of Famers and flame-outs on this list, but as the league expanded, it was easier for the Calder winners to stay on and put forth a Hall of Fame resume.

The results are as follows:

There are currently 73 former Calder Trophy winners who are Hockey Hall of Fame eligible, with 34 entering, yielding a percentage of 46.6.  

If we go by yearly winners, nothing changes, as you cannot win this award twice.

The following are the past players who have won The Calder Trophy who are eligible for the Hockey Hall of Fame and have been enshrined.

1935: Sweeney Schriner, New York Americans, Left Wing: 18 G, 22 A, 40 P, 4.5 PS

Schriner was the first Russian-born player in the NHL, though he was an infant when he moved to Canada.  Making the New York Americans in 1934/35, Schriner played there five seasons, earning First Team and a Second Team in his second and third year, respectively, both of which saw Schriner lead the NHL in Points.  Traded to the Maple Leafs in 1939, the Left Wing enjoyed another First Team All-Star and would win two Stanley Cups (1942 & 1945).  Overall, Schriner scored 407 Points in 484 Games.

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1962.

1937:  Syl Apps, Toronto Maple Leafs, Center.  16 Goals, 29 Assists, 45 Points, 6.1 Point Shares.  

The official Calder is off to an excellent start at Syl Apps would lead the National Hockey League in Assists as a Rookie, and he built on that to be named a postseason All-Star five times.  More importantly, for Apps and the Maple Leafs, he would help them win three Stanley Cups and retire as a Point per Game player. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1961.

1939:  Frank Brimsek, Boston Bruins, Goalie.  33-9-1 Tie, 1.56 GAA, 11.3 PS.  

Very few players had a start to their career like Frank Brimsek as not only was he the Calder Trophy winner, he also was the Vezina Trophy winner, a First Team All-Star, and he took the Boston Bruins to the Stanley Cup.  The native of Eveleth, Minnesota, would lead the Bruins to another Cup win in 1941, and he was also a Vezina Trophy winner in 1942. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1966.

1946:  Edgar Laprade, New York Rangers.  15 Goals, 19 Assists, 34 Points, 2.9 Point Shares.  

15 Goals, 19 Assists, 34 Points, 2.9 Point Shares.  Edgar Laprade played his entire career with the New York Rangers, and he would finish third in Lady Byng balloting that year.  He would win the Lady Byng in the 1949/50 season. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1993.

1951:  Terry Sawchuk, Detroit Red Wings.  44 Wins, 13 Losses, 13 Ties, 1.56 GAA, 17.0 Goalie Point Shares.

In what would be a colossal opening year, Terry Sawchuk would lead the National Hockey League in Goalie Point Shares and was also a First Team All-Star.  Sawchuk was the leader in Wins his year and would be the next four seasons. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971.

1952:  Bernie Geoffrion, Montreal Canadiens.  30 Goals, 24 Assists, 54 Points, 7.0 Point Shares.  

The future Hockey Hall of Famer would lead the NHL in Power-Play Goals.  The future Hart Trophy winner would win six Stanley Cups with a Hart and Art Ross Trophy win in 1961.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972.

1953:  Gump Worsley, New York Rangers.  13 Wins, 29 Losses, 8 Ties, 3.02 GAA, 4.4 Goalie Point Shares.

The "Gump" would lose way more games than he won this season (16), and this would be a theme for Worsley, but he gave it everything he always had, which was why he would enter the Hockey Hall of Fame and would win two Vezina Trophies.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1971.

1956:  Glenn Hall, Detroit Red Wings.  30 Wins, 24 Losses, 16 Ties, 2.10 GAA, 14.5 Goalie Point Shares

As a rookie, Glenn Hall was not only the Calder Trophy winner but also a Second Team All-Star, the leader in Shutouts and Minutes Played, and a second-place finish in Point Shares.  Hall would later be a multi-time postseason All-Star and first-ballot Hall of Famer. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1975.

1958:  Frank Mahovlich, Toronto Maple Leafs.  20 Goals, 16 Assists, 37 Points, 3.3 Point Shares.  

The "Big M" had a. good rookie season, but he would later become a six-time Stanley Cup winner and also a nine-time postseason All-Star.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1972.

1961:  Dave Keon, Toronto Maple Leafs.  20 Goals, 25 Assists, 45 Points, 4.2 Point Shares.  

20 Goals, 25 Assists, 45 Points, 4.2 Point Shares.  With the Toronto Maple Leafs for most of his career, Dave Keon would later be a two-time Lady Byng Trophy winner and was the Conn Smythe Trophy winner for the last Toronto Maple Leaf Stanley Cup Championship team.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1986.

1964:  Jacques Laperriere, Montreal Canadiens.  2 Goals, 28 Assists, 30 Points, 6.7 Point Shares.  

Laperriere was another great Quebecer to play for his home province team, where he was immediately one of the better Defensemen in the NHL.  Playing for the Montreal Canadiens his entire career, he was a Second Team All-Star as a rookie and would be a First Team All-Star the next two seasons after, which included a Norris Trophy win in 1966.  Laperriere would help the Habs win five Stanley Cups.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1987.

1967:  Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins.  13 Goals, 28 Assists, 41 Points, 6.0 Point Shares.

Any chance we have here to talk about Bobby Orr is always a blessing to us!  Orr is, without question, the most outstanding Defenseman that ever lived, and some will go as far as to say he is the best hockey player, period.  As a rookie, the Boston Bruin was a Second Team All-Star roster member.  Orr finished third in Norris Trophy voting but would go on to win the next eight.  He was a great player who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame without the mandatory three-year wait. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1979.

1970:  Tony Esposito, Chicago Blackhawks.  38 Wins, 17 Losses, 8 Ties, 2.17 GAA, 14.7 Goalie Point Shares.

This would be an incredible career for Tony Esposito, who, as a rookie, would not only win the Calder but the Vezina Trophy, the First Team NHL and was the league leader in Wins and Save Percentage.  He would win the Vezina two more times. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1988.

1971:  Gilbert Perreault, Buffalo Sabres.  38 Goals, 34 Assists, 72 Points, 6.5 Point Shares.

38 Goals, 34 Assists, 72 Points, 6.5 Point Shares.  One of the greatest Buffalo Sabres of all time, Gilbert Perreault, played his entire career in Western New York.  The Quebecer would later be named a Second Team All-Star on two occasions and a later Lady Byng Trophy winner.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1990.

1972:  Ken Dryden, Montreal Canadiens.  38 Wins, 8 Losses, 15

 Ties, 2.24 GAA, 15.0 Goalie Point Shares.

In terms of a brief career, nobody in any team sport equals that if Ken Dryden.  Before winning the Calder, Ken Dryden would win the Stanley Cup and Conn Smythe, which made him more successful than any other Calder Trophy winner.  Dryden would later win four Vezina Trophy wins and hoist the Stanley Cup five more times.  Long story short, Ken Dryden was the best NHL Goalie of the 1970s. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1983.

1974:  Denis Potvin, New York Islanders.  17 Goals, 37 Assists, 54 Points, 6.5 Point Shares.  

Denis Potvin was the first piece in what would eventually become the New York Islanders dynasty that would win four Stanley Cups in the 1980s.  Potvin anchored the Islanders blueline, where he would win three Norris Trophies and was a five-time First Team All-Star.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1991.

1976:  Bryan Trottier, New York Islanders.  32 Goals, 63 Assists, 95 Points, 8.6 Point Shares.  

See above!  With the Denis Potvin entry, we talked about him being the building block for the Islanders dynasty.  Here was the next massive piece of the puzzle was Bryan Trottier, who was eighth in the NHL in Assists as a Rookie and had an excellent finish of 95 Points.  Trottier would later win the Hart Trophy (1979), was a four-time postseason Al-Star and in addition to the four Stanley Cups he won with the Islanders, he would help the Pittsburgh Penguins two Cups in the early 1990s.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1997.

1978:  Mike Bossy, New York Islanders.  53 Goals, 38 Assists, 91 Points, 10.3 Point Shares.  

See above!  Again!  Potvin.  Trottier.  Mike Bossy.  Three Calder trophy winners in five years and all three Hall of Famers resulting in four Stanley Cups.  As a rookie, Mike Bossy scored 53 Goals and was second in that metric.  Except for his final season, he never had a year where he dipped below 50.  A Second Team All-Star as a Rookie, Bossy would later be a First Team All-Star five times.  His excellent career ended early at the age of 30 due to back issues.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1991.

1980:  Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins.  17 Goals, 48 Assists, 65 Points, 10.3 Point Shares.  

When you had Bobby Orr, how lucky are you as an organization to land Ray Bourque?  The Boston Bruins Defenseman was a First Team All-Star as a rookie, and he would be named to either a First or Second Team All-Star every year after until the 1996/97 season.  Bourque would later win the Norris Trophy five times.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2004.

1981:  Peter Stastny, Quebec Nordiques.  39 Goals, 70 Assists, 109 Points, 8.6 Point Shares.  

While some might point to Stastny's age (24) and that he had already been playing in his native Czechoslovakia for a while to paint this Calder win as tainted, this was a massive deal as Stastny had already established himself as the best player on the Czechoslovakian team and his defection (along with his brother Anton) ushered in others from the Iron Curtain to do the same.  As an NHL rookie, he scored 109 Points and would have five more 100 Point seasons.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1998.

1982:  Dale Hawerchuk, Winnipeg Jets.  45 Goals, 58 Assists, 103 Points, 7.9 Point Shares.  

Scoring 103 Points as a rookie, Hawerchuk would later be a Second Team All-Star and runner-up for the Hart Trophy in the 1984/85 season.  He would score 1,409 Points over his National Hockey League career.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2001.

1985:  Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins.  43 Goals, 57 Assists, 100 Points, 7.9 Point Shares.  

With a 100 Point season as a rookie, Mario Lemieux was just getting started.  He would win the Hart Trophy three times, the Art Ross six times, was a postseason NHL All-Star nine times, and took the Pittsburgh Penguins to a Stanley Cup win in 1991 and 1992.  He would become the player to rival Wayne Gretzky.  Lemieux retired in 1997 but returned in 2000 as a player owner and retired again in 2006.  Lemieux would later win three more Stanley Cups as an owner and is the only man in history to have his name etched on the Cup as a player and owner.  Had the Penguins never drafted him, there is an excellent chance that Pittsburgh would not have an NHL team today.  He was inducted immediately after his first retirement, and he would become the first player to win the Calder; he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame and returned to action.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1997.

1987:  Luc Robitaille, Los Angeles Kings.  45 Goals, 39 Assists, 84 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

In addition to winning the Calder, Luc Robitaille would be named a Second Team All-Star.  This was just the beginning of a great career that was spent predominantly with Los Angeles, and he would be named a First Team All-Star five times and a Second Team All-Star three times.  He retired with 1,394 points and entered the Hockey Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006.

1988:  Joe Nieuwendyk, Calgary Flames.  51 Goals, 41 Assists, 92 Points, 8.7 Point Shares.  

Nieuwendyk would lead the NHL in Power Play Goals as a rookie and later in his career would win the Stanley Cup with three different teams; 1989 with Calgary, 1999 with Dallas (where he won the Conn Smythe), and 2003 with New Jersey. He finished his career with 1,126 Points.  Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011.

1989:  Brian Leetch, New York Rangers.  23 Goals, 48 Assists, 71 Points, 9.0 Point Shares.  

Brian Leetch had an exceptional career in the NHL, and securing the Calder Trophy was just the beginning.  Leetch played for the Rangers most of his career, winning the Norris Trophy twice and leading his team to win the Stanley Cup in 1994, where he was named the Conn Smythe Trophy winner.  He scored 1,028 Points and entered the Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011.

1990:  Sergei Makarov, Calgary Flames.  24 Goals, 62 Assists, 86 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

Makarov is the most controversial Calder Trophy winner as Makarov was over 30, but this was, in fact, his professional season as he played for the Soviet Union and was a star for the Red Army throughout the 1980s and through Canada Cups and other small tournaments he had played against the NHL's best many times.  Still, by the definition of what a rookie is, he qualified though he entered the Hockey Hall of Fame more on what he did Internationally.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2016.

1991:  Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks.  43 Wins, 19 Losses, 7 Ties, 2.47 GAA, 14.0 Goalie Point Shares.

Ed Belfour had many excellent seasons in the National Hockey League, and the argument can be made that this was his best one.  Belfour won the Vezina and William M. Jennings trophy and was the leader in Goals Against Average, Save Percentage, and Minutes Played.  Belfour would later earn his second Vezina as a Blackhawk two years later, and he was also a William M. Jennings Trophy winner three more times.  More importantly, "Eddie the Eagle" would backstop the Dallas Stars to a Stanley Cup win in 1999. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011.

1992:  Pavel Bure, Vancouver Canucks.  34 Goals, 26 Assists, 60 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

This was a good season for "The Russian Rocket," but he would later have five 50 Goal Seasons, two of which would see him net 60.  Bure a First Team All-Star with the Canucks and later for the Florida Panthers would have back-to-back Second Team All-Star Selections, and Maurice Richard Trophy wins as the NHL's leading Goal Scorer.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2016. 

1993:  Teemu Selanne, Winnipeg Jets.  76 Goals, 56 Assists, 132 Points, 13.4 Point Shares.  

Wow!!!  First off, Selanne was the first player from Finland to win the Calder, but there is so much more here.  Selanne scored 76 Goals and 132 Points, which are by far the most of any rookie and Calder winner.  Considering the current landscape, this could be untouchable.  Selanne would score the most goals this year, but this would be his best season by far of his career though "The Finnish Flash" was no flash in the pan (sorry, I couldn't resist).  Selanne would have three more 100 Point seasons, play into his early 40s and score 1,457 Points over his career.  He would win a Stanley Cup with the Ducks and was a first-ballot Hall of Famer. 

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2017.

1994:  Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils.  27 Wins, 11 Losses, 8 Ties, 8.9 Point Shares.  

Martin Brodeur is one of the most successful Goalies of all time, and save for seven games with the St. Louis Blues, and it was done with the Devils.  Brodeur would later win four Vezina Trophies, five William M. Jennings Trophies, and four Stanley Cups.  Brodeur had a good rookie year, but unlike other Calder winners who were Goalies, Brodeur's Calder year was not even in his top ten.  He is the all-time leader in Wins, Saves, Games Played (by a Goalie), and Minutes Played, and that may not change in 50 years.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018.

1995:  Peter Forsberg, Quebec Nordiques.  15 Goals, 35 Assists, 50 Points, 8.2 Point Shares. 

When the Philadelphia Flyers traded for Eric Lindros, there was a piece of the puzzle that was an unknown factor.  That was the NHL rights to Peter Forsberg, who would turn out (we think) to be the best player in the deal.  The Swedish star would later help the Colorado Avalanche win two Stanley Cups and, for his trophy case, the Hart Trophy and Art Ross in 2002/03.  He would also be a three First Team All-Star.  

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.

1996.  Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Senators.  26 Goals, 35 Assists, 61 Points, 5.3 Point Shares.  

Daniel Alfredsson was the second straight Swedish player to win the Calder (following Peter Forsberg), and the Ottawa Senator would lead the team to their most tremendous success to date.  The greatest player in franchise history would score 1,157 Points and be named a Second Team All-Star in 2005/06.  

Inducted in 2022.


The following are the players who have won the Calder Trophy who are eligible for the Hockey Hall of Fame and have not been selected:

1933:  Carl Voss, New York Rangers & Detroit Red Wings, Center: 8 Goals, 16 Assists, 24 Points, 2.8 Point Shares.

Okay, Carl Voss is in the Hockey Hall of Fame, but he was inducted as a builder in 1974 for his work as a referee and, later, referee-in-chief, not as a player.  This is not to say that he was not a good player; he was, but realistically was, a journeyman, as his 264 Games were not just in New York and Detroit.  Voss also played for Toronto, Ottawa, the St. Louis Eagles, New York Americans, Montreal Maroons, and Chicago and had 105 Points in total.  For this project, Voss belongs on this side of the ledger.

Eligible Since 1947. Unranked on

1934:  Russ Blinco, Montreal Maroons, Center: 14 Goals, 9 Assists, 23 Points, 4.1 Point Shares.

Blinco was only in the NHL for six seasons, as a knee injury in the 1938 training camp led to his retirement at the end of the season.  He played the first five years of his career with the Maroons, winning a Stanley Cup in 1935, and was a Chicago Blackhawk in his last campaign.  He had 125 Points in 265 Games.

Eligible Since 1947. Unranked on

1936:  Mike Karakas, Chicago Blackhawks, Goalie: 21-19-8, 1.85 GAA, 9.5 Point Shares.

Karakas is the first Goalie to win the Calder, and the native of Minnesota would have a nice career in the NHL, playing all but five Games in his eight seasons with Chicago.  A Second Team All-Star in 1945, he backstopped Chicago to a Stanley Cup in 1938.  He is an inaugural member of the United States Hockey Hall of Fame.

Eligible Since 1949. Unranked on

1938:  Cully Dahlstrom, Chicago Blackhawks, Center:  10 Goals, 9 Assists, 19 Points, 1.3 Point Shares.  

Dahlstrom would have better seasons in the National Hockey League, but he would never have a season that could be considered excellent.  He would, however, win the Stanley Cup as a rookie with the Blackhawks, and his 206 Points in 345 Games were perfectly decent.   

Eligible Since 1948. Unranked on

1940:  Kilby MacDonald, New York Rangers.  15 Goals, 13 Assists, 28 Points, 3.8 Point Shares.  

This would be the best season of Kilby MacDonald's brief four-year career as he would bounce back and forth between the Rangers and the minors after.  MacDonald, who also won a Stanley Cup with the Rangers this year, also served in the Army between stints in professional hockey.   

Eligible Since 1948.  Unranked on

1941:  John Quilty, Montreal Canadiens.  18 Goals, 16 Assists, 34 Points, 3.8 Point Shares

18 Goals, 16 Assists, 34 Points, 3.8 Point Shares.  This was by far and away the best season of John Quilty’s career, and after another season for the Montreal Canadiens, he would join the Canadian Military.  Quilty would later return but did not do much and retired with only 81 Points in 125 NHL Games.   

Eligible Since 1951.  Unranked on

1942:  Grant Warwick, New York Rangers.  16 Goals, 17 Assists, 33 Points, 3.0 Point Shares

16 Goals, 17 Assists, 33 Points, 3.0 Point Shares.  Warwick would play for nine seasons in the NHL and peaked with 42 Points in the 1944/45 Season.  He would play most of his career with the New York Rangers, with two seasons with Boston and a year with Montreal following.  

Eligible Since 1953.  Unranked on

1943: Gaye Stewart, Toronto Maple Leafs.  24 Goals, 23 Assists, 47 Points, 4.0 Point Shares. 

The Calder Trophy win for Gaye Stewart had so much historical meaning.  The first is that he would become the first player to win the Calder after he won the Stanley Cup as he played for the Maple Leafs in three games in the 1942 Playoffs.  Like so many, Stewart's career took on a sabbatical as he joined the Royal Canadian Navy during World War II, but he returned in the 1945/46 Season to lead the National Hockey League in Goals, and he was the runner-up for the Hart Trophy and the year after he helped Toronto win the 1947 Stanley Cup.  He was traded the following season to Chicago and was a Second Team All-Star that season.  He finished his career with 344 Points in 502 Games.  

Eligible Since 1956.  Ranked #118 on

1944:  Gus Bodnar, Toronto Maple Leafs.  22 Goals, 40 Assists, 62 Points, 4.5 Point Shares.  

Bodnar's 62 Points were the best of his career, which was likely because it occurred in the depleted talent pool of the World War II NHL.  Bodnar's career was not Hall of Fame worthy, but it was a good one that spanned 12 years long, and he would win two Stanley Cups with Toronto in 1945 and 1947.  

Eligible Since 1958.  Unranked on

1945:  Frank McCool, Toronto Maple Leafs.  24 Wins, 22 Losses, 4 Ties, 3.22 GAA, 10.1 Goalie Point Shares.

Frank McCool had a very interesting and brief career.  The Goalie played hockey at Gonzaga and would join the Canadian Military to serve in World War II.  He would return to hockey, and this time it was at the professional level where he would operate between the pipes for the Toronto Maple Leafs and take them to the Finals and win the Cup.  In the process, he recorded four Shutouts in the postseason and three straight, which still is tied for the record today.  So what did Frank McCool do for an encore?  Not much.  He would play 22 more games for the Leafs and retire shortly after due to ulcers.  

Eligible since 1949.  Unranked on

1947:  Howie Meeker, Toronto Maple Leafs.  27 Goals, 18 Assists, 45 Points, 4.5 Point Shares

The first season of Howie Meeker’s career was arguably his finest as he had career highs with 27 Goals and 45 Points as a rookie and would help the Toronto Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup.  Meeker would win two more Stanley Cups with Toronto and retired with 185 Points in 346 Games.  Meeker would later become more famous as a broadcaster.  

Eligible Since 1957.  Unranked on

1948:  Jim McFadden, Detroit Red Wings.  24 Goals, 24 Assists, 48 Points, 5.7 Point Shares.  

In terms of traditional statistics, Jim McFadden's best season was his rookie year, where he had career highs in Goals, Assists, and Points.  McFadden's career was not long, as it lasted seven seasons, four with Detroit and three with Chicago.  His last season in Motown would see him win the Stanley Cup.  

Eligible Since 1957.  Unranked on

1949:  Pentti Lund, New York Rangers.  14 Goals, 16 Assists, 30 Points, 2.6 Point Shares.  

This was the best season of Lund's career, where he had career highs in Points and would become the first European born to win the Calder.  Lund was born in Finland, although he arrived in Canada at six.  The Forward would last five years in the NHL. 

Eligible Since 1956.  Unranked on

1950:  Jack Gelineau, Boston Bruins (1950)

22 Wins, 30 Losses, 15 Ties, 3.28 GAA, 7.3 Point Shares.  Jack Gelineau may have had a losing record, but he was a machine in terms of workload.  The Boston Bruin was fifth in Goalie Point Shares this season and was third in the season after, but his overall career ended shortly after.  

Eligible Since 1957.  Unranked on

1954:  Camille Henry, New York Rangers.  24 Goals, 15 Assists, 39 Points, 5.4 Point Shares.

Camille Henry's rookie season would see him lead the National Hockey League in Power Play Goals (20).  Henry would regress and bounce around in the AHL but return to have a Second Team All-Star and Lady Byng-winning season in 1957/58.  Henry would finish in the top five in Lady Byng voting five more times, finish first in Power Play Goals two more times, and retire with 528 Points in 727 Games.  

Eligible Since 1973.  Ranked #190 on

1955: Ed Litzenberger, Montreal Canadiens & Chicago Blackhawks.  23 Goals, 28 Assists, 51 Points, 5.8 Point Shares

According to the story, the Montreal Canadiens “gifted” Litzenberger in a trade to the Chicago Blackhawks to keep the team viable in the NHL, basically so they would not go bankrupt!  He would score 51 Points as a rookie and would later be a Second Team All-Star in 1957, where he was sixth in Hart Trophy voting.  He retired with 416 Points in 619 Games. 

Eligible Since 1967.  Ranked #147 on

1957:  Larry Regan, Boston Bruins.  14 Goals, 19 Assists, 33 Points, 2.8 Point Shares.

With all due respect to Larry Regan, he had a pedestrian career in professional hockey and did nothing more than what you saw this season.  The forward would only score 136 Points over his career in the NHL. 

Eligible in 1964.  Unranked on

1959:  Ralph Backstrom, Montreal Canadiens.  18 Goals, 22 Assists, 40 Points, 3.8 Point Shares

Ralph Backstrom would win six Stanley Cup Rings with the Montreal Canadiens and was also a six-time All-Star.  

Eligible in 1980.  Ranked #27 on

1960:  Bill Hay, Chicago Blackhawks.  18 Goals, 37 Assists, 50 Points, 4.9 Point Shares.  

Bill Hay played all eight seasons in the NHL with the Chicago Blackhawks, where he would win a Stanley Cup and a Calder, but these would be the only awards he would win.  He did enter the Hall as a builder for his work as the Calgary Flames CEO and work as the Hall's Chairman, but for our purposes, Hay was not (nor would he have been) enshrined as a player.  

Eligible Since 1970.  Unranked on

1962:  Bobby Rousseau, Montreal Canadiens.  21 Goals, 24 Assists, 45 Points, 4.3 Point Shares.  

Rousseau would lead the NHL in Short-Handed Goals and later help the Montreal Canadiens win four Stanley Cups in the 1960s.  In the 1965/66 season, he would lead the NHL in Assists and was named a Second Team All-Star.  He would score 703 Points over his career.  

Eligible Since 1978.  Ranked #141 on

1963:  Kent Douglas, Toronto Maple Leafs.  7 Goals, 15 Assists, 22 Points, 6.6 Point Shares.  

While Kent Douglas would have better individual stats in later years, his first season in the NHL was special as he not only won the Calder but was a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs’ 1963 Stanley Cup win. 

Eligible Since 1976.  Unranked on

Roger Crozier, Detroit Red Wings.  40 Wins, 22 Losses, 7 Ties, 2.42 GAA, 14.4 Point Shares.  

The rookie season of Roger Crozier was also the best of his career as he was the league leader in Wins, Saves, Shutouts, and Minutes Played while also being named a First Team All-Star.  Crozier was named the Conn Smythe winner the following year, but he never had a season like this again though he is still a 200 Game winner. 

Eligible Since 1980.  Unranked on

1966.  Brit Selby, Toronto Maple Leafs.  14 Goals, 13 Assists, 27 Points, 2.0 Point Shares.  

14 Goals, 13 Assists, 27 Points, 2.0 Point Shares.  Considering that he was a Calder Trophy winner, Brit Selby did not have a great career, as he would be sent down to the minors the year after and never had a season higher than 30 Points.  He isn't the worst player to win the Calder but is he in the top ten, or is it the bottom ten?

Eligible Since 1978.  Unranked on

1968:  Derek Sanderson, Boston Bruins.   24 Goals, 25 Assists, 49 Points, 4.8 Point Shares.

Many books can be written on the career of Derek Sanderson, but for this purpose, we have an exciting Calder Trophy winner who had the tiger by the tail.  Sanderson would later win the Stanley Cup twice with the Boston Bruins but never again win another individual accolade.  

Eligible Since 1981.  Unranked on

Danny Grant, Minnesota North Stars.  34 Goals, 31 Assists, 65 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

Danny Grant had an understated career spent predominantly with the Minnesota North Stars and Detroit Red Wings.  Grant would have four 60 Point Seasons, this being the first of them, but overall, it did not warrant serious Hall of Fame consideration.  

Eligible Since 1982.   Unranked on

1973:  Steve Vickers, New York Rangers.  30 Goals, 23 Assists, 53 Points, 5.9 Point Shares.

Steve Vickers made history as the first rookie to score consecutive hat tricks, and he would put the puck in the net 30 times in his Calder Trophy-winning season.  Vickers would be named a Second Team All-Star two seasons later with a 41 Goal year, but by age 30, he was out of the NHL after his play dropped considerably.  

Eligible since 1985.   Ranked #229

1975:  Eric Vail, Atlanta Flames.  39 Goals, 21 Assists, 60 Points, 6.1 Point Shares.

39 Goals, 21 Assists, 60 Points, 6.1 Point Shares.  Eric Vail's best goal-scoring season was as a rookie (39), and he would become the first player in Flames franchise history to win the Calder.  Vail would have two more 30 Goal seasons, and when the team moved to Calgary, he was the leading goal scorer in franchise history.  

Eligible Since 1985.  Unranked on

1977:  Willi Plett, Atlanta Flames.  33 Goals, 23 Assists, 56 Points, 6.1 Point Shares.  

This was the second Calder trophy in three years for the Atlanta Flames, but unlike the Islanders, who had the same earlier with Potvin and Trottier, Eric Vail and Willi Plett were not in that league.  Still, Plett had 33 Goals as a rookie and would have another 30-goal season when he scored 38 the year the Flames moved to Calgary.  This would be the only individual award that Plett would win in the NHL.  

Eligible Since 1991.  Unranked on

1979:  Bobby Smith, Minnesota North Stars.  30 Goals, 44 Assists, 74 Points, 6.1 Point Shares.  

Bobby Smith had a promising career where he would score 1,036 Points and would be a four-time All-Star.  His best individual seasons were with the Minnesota North Stars, but he would later win the Stanley Cup with the Montreal Canadiens in 1986. 

Eligible Since 1996.  Ranked #36 on

Steve Larmer, Chicago Blackhawks (1983)

43 Goals, 47 Assists, 90 Points, 8.4 Point Shares.  Steve Larmer was a Point per Game player in the National Hockey League, which was very good for the 1980s but not what it means today.  Larmer would go to two All-Star Games, and late in his career, he would assist the New York Rangers would win the Stanley Cup.  

Eligible Since 1998.  Ranked #31 on

1984:  Tom Barrasso, Buffalo Sabres.  26 Wins, 12 Losses, 3 Ties, 2.85 GAA, 7.5 Point Shares.  

Tom Barrasso would have a very long career in the National Hockey League (19 years), but like other Calder-winning Goalies, his best season professionally was as a rookie.  He would not only win the Calder but was a First Team All-Star and would win the Vezina.  Barrasso would later win the William M. Jennings Trophy and two Second Team All-Star nods and won 369 Games in the NHL overall.  

Eligible Since 2006.  Ranked #14 on

Gary Suter, Calgary Flames.  18 Goals, 50 Assists, 68 Points, 8.0 Point Shares.  

Gary Suter would score well for a Defenseman, and in his third season, he scored 91 Points en route to a third-place finish in Norris Trophy voting and a Second Team All-Star Selection.  Suter would help the Flames win the Stanley Cup the year after and overall would score 844 Points in his NHL career.  

Eligible Since 2005.  Ranked #54 on

1997.  Bryan Berard, New York Islanders.  8 Goals, 40 Assists, 48 Points, 7.6 Point Shares.  

The native of Rhode Island would never have a season where he had more Points or Point Shares, but he still had a good career, especially considering it was almost over after getting slashed in the eye by a stick in 2000 that nearly caused him to lose it.  The fact that he came back at all to be effective was a testament to who Berard was, and he would win the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy in the 2003/04 Season.  

Eligible Since 2011.  Unranked on

1998.  Sergei Samsonov, Boston Bruins.  22 Goals, 25 Assists, 47 Points, 5.5 Point Shares.  

Sergei Samsonov would have a pretty good career in the NHL with 571 Points in 888 Games, but when you a teen sensation from Russia winning the Calder, you expected something more, and likely the Bruins faithful hoped for the same. 

Eligible Since 2014.  Unranked on

1999:  Chris Drury, Colorado Avalanche.  20 Goals, 24 Assists, 44 Points, 5.0 Point Shares.  

Drury would have a solid career helping the Avalanche win the Stanley Cup in 2001.  He would later blossom into a strong defensive forward, and for five years in a row (2005-06 to 2009-10), he would receive votes for the Frank J. Selke. 

Eligible Since 2014.  Ranked #295 on

2000:  Scott Gomez, New Jersey Devils.  19 Goals, 51 Assists, 70 Points, 7.3 Point Shares.  

From the great state of Alaska, Scott Gomez scored 70 Points as a rookie and would hit that mark three more times.  Gomez helped the Devils win the Stanley Cup as a rookie and again in 2003, and he would be a two-time All-Star.  He scored 756 Points over his career.  

Eligible Since 2019.  Ranked #258 on

2001:  Evgeni Nabokov, San Jose Sharks.  32 Wins, 21 Losses, 7 Ties, 2.19 GAA, .915 Save Percentage, 11.7 Point Shares.  

Evgeni Nabokov finished fourth in Vezina Trophy as a rookie and would finish in the top six five more times.  He would also be a First Team All-Star in 2007/08 when he led the Goalies in Wins.  He would have a career record of 353-227-86.  

Eligible Since 2018.  Ranked #119 on

2002:  Dany Heatley, Atlanta Thrashers.  26 Goals, 41 Assists, 67 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

Heatley had a great start to his career, but a car crash that killed a teammate necessitated a change of scenery, and he would be traded to the Ottawa Senators, who would later have a pair of 100 Point Seasons, where he was named a First Team and Second Team All-Star.  He would score 791 Points in 869 Games.  

Eligible Since 2018.  Ranked #112 on

2003:  Barret Jackman, St. Louis Blues.  3 Goals, 16 Assists, 19 Points, 5.4 Point Shares.  

Barret Jackman would have a promising career as a stay-at-home Defenseman, and he spent with the St. Louis Blues for all but one season.  Jackman never would come close to winning an individual award, but the fact that the Blues held on to him for 13 seasons shows what kind of asset he was.   

Eligible Since 2019.  Unranked on

2004:  Andrew Raycroft, Boston Bruins.  29 Wins, 18 Losses, 9 Ties, 2.05 GAA, .926 Save Percentage, 12.6 Point Shares.  

Other than his Calder trophy win, Raycroft only had one good season of note: with the Toronto Maple Leafs three years after his Calder win.  Those two years contributed to over half of Goalie Point Shares over his 11 seasons in the National Hockey League.  

Eligible Since 2015.  Unranked on

2009:  Steve Mason, Columbus Blue Jackets.  33 Wins, 20 Losses, 7 Ties, 2.29 GAA, .916 Save Percentage, 11.2 Point Shares.  

Mason's Calder Trophy-winning season was his best year by far, and he was also the runner-up for the Vezina and fourth place finish in Hart Trophy voting.  Mason would have a 205-183-64 record while also playing for Philadelphia and Winnipeg.  

Eligible Since 2021.  Unranked on

So, who is up next?

The following are the players who have won the NHL Calder Trophy who have retired but have not met the mandatory years out of the game to qualify for the Hockey Hall of Fame: 


The following are the past players who have won the NHL Calder Trophy who are eligible for the Hockey Hall of Fame and are still active.

2006:  Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals.  52 Goals, 54 Assists, 106 Points, 12.7 Point Shares.  

52 Goals, 54 Assists, 106 Points, 12.7 Point Shares.  Ovechkin was the first Washington Capital to win the Calder, and he did so with a 50 Goal and 100 Point Season, which is no small feat in the dead puck era.  Since that win, Ovechkin took the Capitals to their first Stanley Cup win in 2018, and along the way, he has won seven Maurice Richard Awards, three Hart Trophies, and one Art Ross.  

37 Years Old, Playing for the Washington Capitals.

2007:  Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins.  33 Goals, 52 Assists, 85 Points, 9.4 Point Shares.  

Evgeni Malkin would be the second straight Russian to win the Calder, and to date, he has had a spectacular career where he has been a four-time All-Star, a Hart Trophy winner, and a two-time Art Ross winner.  Malkin would also take the Penguins to three Stanley Cups, continuing the winning tradition of the Western Pennsylvania team.  

36 Years Old, Playing for the Washington Capitals.

2008:  Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks.  21 Goals, 51 Assists, 72 Points, 7.2 Point Shares.  

Patrick Kane has to date an incredible career where; he has won three Stanley Cups with the Blackhawks and was also a three-time First Team All-Star.  He would win the Hart Trophy in 2015/16.  

34 Years Old, Playing for the Chicago Blackhawks.

2010:  Tyler Myers, Buffalo Sabres.  11 Goals, 37 Assists, 48 Points, 9.8 Point Shares.  

As of this writing, Tyler Myers' rookie season was his best by far, as his Goals, Assists, Points, and Point Shares were all career highs.  It has been a good career but not what you would hope for considering his start.  

32 Years Old, Playing for the Vancouver Canucks.

2011:  Jeff Skinner, Carolina Hurricanes.  31 Goals, 32 Assists, 63 Points, 8.1 Point Shares.  

To date, Skinner has been named an All-Star twice and has equaled his rookie point total in 2016/17 but has not eclipsed it.  

30 Years Old, Playing for the Buffalo Sabres.

2012:  Gabriel Landeskog, Colorado Avalanche.  22 Goals, 30 Assists, 52 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  

22 Goals, 30 Assists, 52 Points, 6.8 Point Shares.  From Sweden, Gabriel Landeskog has performed well and went to his first All-Star Game in 2019.  He does have a way to go to get onto a Hockey Hall of Fame trajectory, but his Stanley Cup in 2022 helps a lot.

30 Years Old, Playing for the Colorado Avalanche.

2013:  Jonathan Huberdeau, Florida Panthers.  14 Goals, 17 Assists, 31 Points, 3.3 Point Shares.  

Huberdeau has thus far had a good career though it has been spent primarily on smaller-market teams.  He was a back-to-back Second Team All-Star in 2021 and 2022 before he was traded to Calgary.

29 Years Old, Playing for the Calgary Flames

2014:  Nathan McKinnon, Colorado Avalanche.  24 Goals, 39 Assists, 63 Points, 3.3 Point Shares.  

Since his Calder Trophy win, McKinnon has had two 90 Point Seasons and, in 2017/18, was a Second Team All-Star and the runner-up for the Hart Trophy.   In 2022, McKinnon would help lead Colorado to their third Stanley Cup.

27 Years Old, Playing for the Colorado Avalanche.

2015:  Aaron Ekblad, Florida Panthers.  12 Goals, 27 Assists, 39 Points, 8.5 Point Shares.  

A better than you think blueliner, Ekblad finished 22ndi n Norris Trophy voting as a rookie and was 16th as a sophomore.   He would have his first top-ten Norris finish in 2021/22.

26 Years Old, Playing for the Florida Panthers.

2016:  Artemi Panarin, Chicago Blackhawks.  30 Goals, 47 Assists, 77 Points, 9.8 Point Shares.  

Panarin played in the KHL a little longer and did not arrive in the NHL until he was 23, making him a little older than most rookies, so perhaps he had a bit of an advantage, but he was great as a rookie, and he would be named a Second Team All-Star in his second season.  In his first year with the Rangers (2019-20), he was chosen as a First Team All-Star

31 Years Old, Playing for the New York Rangers.

2017:  Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs.  40 Goals, 29 Assists, 69 Points, 9.7 Point Shares.  

Maple Leafs fans were thrilled when Matthews scored five goals in his first game, and overall in his rookie year, he had a 40 Goal season that was good enough for second overall.  The American was also named an All-Star, and he led the NHL in Even Strength Goals.  In 2021-22, Matthews won the Hart, fulfilling what many Toronto fans saw on day one.

25 Years Old, Playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

2018:  Mathew Barzal, New York Islanders.  22 Goals, 63 Assists, 85 Points, 8.2 Point Shares.  

Barzal finished fifth in the NHL in Assists as a rookie.  To date, this is the best year that Barzal has had in the NHL.

25 Years Old, Playing for the New York Islanders.

2019:  Elias Petterson, Vancouver Canucks.  28 Goals, 38 Assists, 66 Points, 7.8 Point Shares.  

Petterson went to this year’s All-Star Game and the one after, showing a promising start to his NHL career.

24 Years Old, Playing for the Vancouver Canucks.

2020:  Cale Makar, Colorado Avalanche.  12 Goals, 38 Assists, 50 Points, 7.7 Point Shares.  

Regardless of the era, Makar had one of the best rookie seasons of any Defenseman, and he finished ninth in Norris voting.  Two years later, Makar had a season for the ages, winning the Norris, the Stanley Cup, and the Conn Smythe, joining Bobby Orr as the only player to do so.

24 Years Old, Playing for the Colorado Avalanche.

2021:  Kirill Kaprizov, Minnesota Wild.  27 Goals, 24 Assists, 51 Points, 6.7 Point Shares.  

Kaprizov had a great rookie year, finishing 15th in Hart voting and immediately becoming the top player on the Wild.

25 Years Old, Playing for the Minnesota Wild.

2022:  Moritz Seider, Detroit Red Wings.  7 Goals, 43 Assists, 50 Points, 6.7 Point Shares.  

Seider became the first Red Wing to win the Calder in the post-Original Six era and the first German-born recipient.

21 Years Old, Playing for the Detroit Red Wings.

From what we can see in terms of the Calder Trophy winners, there is some solid Hall of Fame potential, but like so many sports, injuries can derail such great starts.  The Calder looks to be our favorite NHL Award to monitor as we go forward.

As you see, the Calder is a hit-or-miss projection on Hall of Fame potential, and though some serious talents have yet to retire and will immediately enter the Hall, some won't.  We doubt that this percentage will change that much.

Committee Chairman

Kirk Buchner, "The Committee Chairman", is the owner and operator of the site.  Kirk can be contacted at [email protected] .

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