Calder Watch: Myers towers over the field 

March, 9, 2010

With the Olympic break and the usual hoopla surrounding the trade deadline taking up a lot of my time in recent weeks, it's been a while since I've been able to take a look at the race for the Calder Trophy. That changes Tuesday. With no further ado, here's my updated list of the league's top five rookies:

1. Tyler Myers, D, Buffalo Sabres: Buffalo's oversized (6-foot-8, 222 pounds) baby blueliner continues to be an impact player for head coach Lindy Ruff. Averaging 23 minutes, 40 seconds of ice time per game, he leads both his own team and all rookies in this telling statistical category. In fact, Myers receives nearly three minutes more per game than any of his more-experienced teammates. That should tell you something, right?

Myers leads all rookie defensemen with eight goals, 24 assists and 32 points. And the 20-year-old NHL freshman has a respectable plus-3. For me, Myers remains a stride ahead of his fellow rookie classmates.

E.J. Hradek

Senior Writer, ESPN The Magazine
E.J. Hradek is a senior writer at ESPN The Magazine, joining the staff prior to its launch in 1998. He began covering hockey as a writer/editor for Hockey Illustrated in 1989.