San Jose rookie sensation Logan Couture just won his first Calder Memorial Trophy as the league’s rookie of the year, as the only San Jose Shark to even be nominated for an award this season.
And what a season it was! In 79 regular season games, Logan finished 6th in scoring with San Jose netting 32 goals and 24 assists. His playoff tour wasn’t shabby either, skating in all 18 games and finishing 4th amongst the Sharks in playoff points with 7 goals and 7 assists.
An excellent scoring season wasn’t all this youthful talent earned in the 2010-2011 season. In December 2010, Logan earned the league’s Rookie of the Month and was named to the 2011 NHL All-Stars Skills Competition.
Amongst League rookies, he was 1st in shots (253), game-winning goals and power play goals (10), 2nd goals and points (32-24=56), and 5th in plus/minus (+18). His 22 road goals were 4th in the League and second-most in Sharks franchise history. He’s only the 23rd rookie to ever reach 20+ road goals.
Logan had some stiff competition however, as Michael Grabner from the New York Islanders and Jeff Skinner from the Carolina Hurricanes were named finalists for the Calder.
Grabner had a fantastic season in his own right on Long Island. In 76 games Grabner notched 34 goals and 18 assists, falling behind Couture in assists, but besting the Shark by only 2 goals. The Islanders rookie represented his organization in the NHL All Star Skills competition, helping Team Staal earn the weekend’s festivities by winning the Fastest Skater competition with the two fastest times of 14.061 in his first heat and 14.238 in the finals.
Carolina’s Jeff Skinner appears to be the man to beat for the Calder. Skinner is the only Calder Finalist to be a pure rookie, and played all 82 games for Carolina, finishing 2nd in scoring amongst the Hurricanes with 31 goals and 31 assists. Skinner participated in the 2011 NHL All-Star Game as Sidney Crosby’s replacement, when Crosby had to drop out due to his concussion, making Skinner the first 18 year old NHL All-Star since Steve Yzerman in 1984.
Skinner was named the NHL’s Rookie of the Month for January 2011, the month following Couture’s award.