Nico Hischier, Clayton Kelle and Nolan Patrick are just a few names already being tossed around for possible rookie of the year contenders. The only issue is that most of the contenders being talked about are forwards. There is one defenseman who turned a few heads in the playoffs last year and should easily be in the Calder race.
Boston Bruins d-man Charlie McAvoy made an immediate impact with the Bruins when he suited up for them in the first round of the playoffs last season. Hockey fans were stunned by the fact that he was logging such long minutes on the blue line, and looked like he had been doing this for many years. It will be truly exciting to see what McAvoy can do in a full season. He also was a force for Team USA at the World Junior Hockey Championships and was a big part of their Gold medal finish.