In the second edition of theScore's 2021 Calder Trophy Power Rankings, we feature three rookies new to the list, including one of last year's high-profile draftees.
Although postponements and small sample sizes have skewed some of the numbers, these five freshmen are worthy of recognition.
Suter has filled in admirably on the Blackhawks' top line after Jonathan Toews and Kirby Dach suffered injuries. The 24-year-old leads all rookies in goals (six) and ranks third in points. Suter's done the majority of his damage at even strength, too. He's already exceeded expectations as an unheralded signing out of Switzerland.
Norris has been a real bright spot in what's been a difficult season for the Senators. The 21-year-old pivot ranks second on the team in scoring and second among all rookies, though he's played more games than most of his peers. However, Norris' underlying numbers are perhaps the most impressive aspect of his debut campaign. His expected goal stats shine relative to his teammates, which is a great sign for a club in desperate need of depth down the middle of the ice.
Lankinen has come out of left field to change the entire outlook of the Blackhawks' season. Chicago was widely considered to be a lottery team thanks to injuries and uncertainty in goal, but the undrafted 25-year-old has thrust the club into playoff contention. Lankinen's save percentage through 13 games ranks fifth in the league, and he's tied for the lead among all goalies with nine goals saved above average.
Stutzle has made a charge up our rankings after missing the cut last month as he's more consistently showcasing his scintillating skill set. The 2020 third overall pick leads all rookies with seven points in February and appears to be getting more comfortable with life in the NHL. Stutzle is emerging as a stronger scoring threat with each passing game; he'll only see his point total climb as he's awarded more responsibility.
The Wild have played only five games in February due to a COVID-19 outbreak, yet Kaprizov leads all rookies in scoring. The Russian winger also tops Minnesota in points, and he leads all first-year forwards in ice time. Not only has Kaprizov met expectations in his inaugural season on North American soil, but he's also proved to be the most dynamic first-year player in 2021 by a significant margin.