Detroit – There was little doubt how good Moritz Seider was in his rookie NHL season, but that became perfectly clear Tuesday at the NHL Awards Show.
Seider, the Red Wings’ outstanding first-year defenseman, won the NHL’s Calder Trophy, awarded “to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition” by the Professional Hockey Writers Association.
Anaheim’s Trevor Zegras and Toronto’s Michael Bunting were the other finalists.
Seider led all rookie defensemen with 50 points (seven goals, 43 assists), a point total passed by only two other rookie defensemen in the last 30 years: Vancouver’s Quinn Hughes (53) in 2019-20 and the New York Islanders’ Vladimir Malakhov (52) in 1992-93.
Only Reed Larson (60 points, 1977-78) and Nicklas Lidstrom (60 points, 1991-92) have surpassed 50 points as rookie defensemen in Red Wings history.
Seider led all 2021-22 rookies (forwards and defensemen) in assists (43), power-play assists (19) and power-play points (21), while ranking among the top five in shots on goal (third, 187), points (fourth, 50) and game-winning goals (tied for fifth with four).
Seider played in all 82 games and led all rookies in total ice time (1,889 minutes, 22 seconds) and minutes per game (23:02).
“You earned a ton of respect around the league, not only from his teammates but from opponents,” forward Sam Gagner said during his season-ending press conference. “Just the way he played, the way he carried himself. You look back to the first game of the year against Tampa and he was already kind of commanding that respect, and not afraid of the moment and he just continued to grow.
“It’s a long year when you haven’t played in the NHL before. There’s a lot of ups and downs. Specifically with our season, with the struggles we went through in the second half, it makes it feel even longer, and Mo just kept playing, kept improving. He really did it all for us.
“From an off-ice perspective, he’s already become a leader for us. He understands the leadership aspect and isn’t afraid to be himself. The sky’s the limit for him. ”
Seider becomes the first Wings defenseman to win the award and first Wings rookie since Roger Crozier in 1964-65. Goaltender Jimmy Howard was the last Wings’ Calder finalist in 2009-10.
Seider was the sixth overall pick in the 2019 Entry Draft.