Oddly enough, there are still people out there willing to make a case against Detroit Red Wings defenseman Moritz Seider as the Calder Trophy favorite.
Add Vancourites to the list of Seider converts.
Early into Thursday’s 1-0 Detroit victory, Canucks TV analyst and former NHL goalie John Garrett was allowing that Seider might be a Calder contender. By game’s end, the Vancouver broadcast team sounded as if they were willing to inscribe Seider’s name on the trophy themselves.
Watching Mo Seider live for the first time, this kid is a star already…@DetroitRedWings
— Ray Ferraro (@rayferrarotsn) March 18, 2022
Numbers-wise, Seider finished pointless and +1. He had three shots, two hits and four blocked shots. Seider logged a team-leading 24 shifts and 23:58 of ice time. Seider was the Red Wings leader in power-play ice time (1:27) and third in shorthanded ice time (3:06). And he finished the second period with a defensive zone shift for the ages.
Seider Rules The House
Killing off a Detroit penalty, in a span of about 10 seconds, Seider made three Grade-A individual defensive plays inside the Red Wings zone.
Moritz Seider really does it all on the defensive end. 🤩 pic.twitter.com/gSpsrj8AVb
— NHL (@NHL) March 18, 2022
Firstly, he muscled Canucks forward JT Miller off the puck as the Canucks forward tried to drive to the Detroit net. Next, with a nifty active sitck, he aplty deflected a pass into the slot by Vancouver captain Bo Horvat. A split-second later, Seider sacrficed his body, laying out to block a one-timer by Canucks defenseman Quinn Hughes from between the hash marks.
Nedeljkovic Applauds His Rookie Defenseman
Red Wings goalie Alex Nedeljkovic marveled at Seider’s performance in front of him.
“Mo has stepped up in big moments this year already,” Nedeljkovic said. “(Thursday) he did it in a different way. He made two key players at the end of the period there when I had no idea where the puck was.”
Mo Seider calmly taking the puck away from McDavid 1v1 pic.twitter.com/9z5h3GXx8H
— Brady Trettenero (@BradyTrett) March 16, 2022
Not only was Seider helping his team win, he was setting an example for his more experienced teammates.
“I didn’t see anything so I’m glad it was him that was sacrificing his body and that’s something I think we need to kind of understand and we need to do a little bit more of,” Nedeljkovic said. “Not necessarily laying our bodies out and throwing ourselves left and right but just sacrificing ourselves for each other.
“Showing guys that we’re willing to do a little bit extra to win in this league.”
Seider Setting Bar High For Red Wings
Seider’s been doing the little extras for the Wings all season long. He shows 1-12-13 totals over the past 14 games. He’s been an even or plus player in nine of those games during a stretch in which the Red Wings are 5-8-1. He’s never played fewer than 20 minutes in any of those games.
For the season, Seider leads all rookie defensemen with 5-37-42 totals. His 37 assists in fact lead all rookies and rank 10th among all NHL rearguards. Seider is also the NHL rookie leader in average time on ice (23:02), blocked shots (121), overtime goals (two), power-play points (17) and shortanded points (two). He’s among seven NHL rookies who have compiled 100 hits on the season.
He’s -1 on a Detroit club that is showing a goal differential of -52. Seider is on pace to become the first Red Wings rookie to collect 50 points in a season since Nicklas Lidstrom in 1991-92.