Wild superstar rookie Kirill Kaprizov wins Calder Trophy
In the least shocking news of the week, Wild superstar rookie Kirill Kaprizov has won the Calder Trophy.
In the least shocking news of the week, Wild superstar rookie Kirill Kaprizov has won the Calder Trophy. The award is given annually to the best rookie in the league and the 24-year-old Kaprizov proved to be exactly that this season.
He garnered 99 of 100 first-place votes from the Professional Hockey Writers Association, the highest percentage of first-place votes in Calder Trophy balloting since 1992-93. This is the first time in franchise history that a Wild player has won the Calder Trophy. Dallas Stars rookie Jason Robertson was the runner-up to Kaprizov.
It looked like it was going to be a two-horse race down the stretch this season. That is until Kaprizov pulled away from Robertson with a dominant final month of the regular season. In total, Kaprizov finished with a team-high 27 goals across 55 games, and he tallied 24 assists for good measure.
Truthfully, this honor for Kaprizov has seemingly been written in the stars ever since he scored the overtime winner in his NHL debut against the Los Angeles Kings. He parlayed that incredible moment into an even more incredible rookie season, continuously living up to the hype game after game after game.
Though a brief interview with Kaprizov played during the NHL Awards Show on Tuesday night, he was not made available for comment, as he’s currently on a fishing trip in Siberia without Internet access. According to the Wild, the hope is for Kaprizov to be made available at some point next week.
Whenever he talks to reporters, Kaprizov undoubtedly will be peppered with questions regarding his contract status. He’s in line for a new contract this offseason and Wild general manager Bill Guerin has made it clear that re-signing Kaprizov is the team’s top priority this offseason.
It’s no secret the Wild hope to sign Kaprizov to a long-term deal to keep him around the Twin Cities for the foreseeable future. That said, Kaprizov is reportedly more interested in a short-term deal, not wanting to tie himself to the Wild without knowing what the roster will look like down the road.
“We’d prefer a longer deal,” Guerin said last month. “There’s two sides to the coin. You have to be open minded. Like I said, it’s a process, so there’s some going back and forth and things like that. Look, we love Kirill, I don’t think there’s any secret there, and what he’s brought to our team. We will do what we can to get a fair deal.”