The National Hockey League released its finalists for the Calder Trophy this morning, and Matt Read isn’t on the list.
Instead, Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog, Adam Henrique of the New Jersey Devils and #1 overall pick Ryan Nugent-Hopkins of Edmonton garnered the top three slots.
Like they used to say in Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Court: Fair or unfair…UNFAIR!!!
Our own Nick D laid down the case for the 25-year-old Bemidji State product last week, and while it may be true that his age was a contributing factor in being left off the ballot, there are several more factors which he still believes made him just as suitable as the other three:
“Read finished his first year fourth in rookie scoring, in the entire league. In 79 games, he potted more pucks than any rookie with 24 goals, notched 23 assists, to give him a total of 47 points and finished the year a plus-13….had more game winning goals than any first-year player with six clinchers…
“He also scored two short-handed goals, had three short-handed points, and four goals and seven assists on the power play. That means he scored 18 of his 24 goals and got 15 of his 23 assists at even strength…
“According to behindthenet.ca, a Corsi rating and other advanced statistics database site, that’s 1.17 and 0.98 assists per 60 minutes at full strength, to give Read 2.15 points per 60 minutes during five-on-five hockey. Landeskog sits at 0.75 goals, 1.0 assists for 1.74 points per 60 minutes, while Henrique had 0.57 goals and 1.24 assists for 1.81 points per 60 minutes…
“The Flyers also block more shots per 60 minutes when Read’s on the ice than the Avalanche do when Landeskog is playing or the Devils do when Adam Henrique is playing.”
And so, the streak continues, 45 years and 44 seasons without recognition for the Flyers producing the best first-year player in the NHL.
It’s one thing to have been lost behind a 76-goal scorer (Teemu Selanne) like Eric Lindros was in 1993, and quite another to have been shafted by a New York Ranger (Steve Vickers in 1973) as Bill Barber was, but for Read not even make the final cut was…an insult, despite a rich crop of rookies and their respective standout seasons.