Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin of Denver, CO made National Hockey League history on Saturday by becoming the fourth defenseman ever to win the Lady Byng Award according to Josh Wegman of the Score. In 52 games, Slavin only took one minor penalty, a remarkable feat when you consider the fact that defensemen average a significant amount of more ice time than forwards.
Slavin, who averaged 22 minutes and 59 seconds of ice time per game, scored three goals and 12 assists for 15 points. He was a +22, with one powerplay point, one shorthanded point, 101 shots on goal, 87 blocked shots, 35 hits, 24 takeaways, and 30 giveaways. Slavin’s power-play assist came on an empty-net goal by Sebastian Aho of Rauma, Finland on March 2 in a 4-2 Hurricanes win over the Nashville Predators. Slavin’s shorthanded assist came on a shorthanded goal by Aho in a 4-2 Hurricanes win over the Florida Panthers on March 7.
Slavin’s only game with a penalty also came in the same game against the Panthers where he had a shorthanded point. It was a two minute delay of game infraction at 5:39 of the second period.
The other three defensemen to have won the Lady Byng Trophy were Bill Quackenbush of Toronto, Ontario, Red Kelly of Simcoe, Ontario, and Brian Campbell of Strathroy, Ontario. Quackenbush won the Lady Byng Trophy with the Detroit Red Wings in 1948-49, as he had zero penalty minutes in 60 games. Kelly won the Lady Byng Trophy four times, but only three times as a defenceman with the Red Wings in 1951, 1953, and 1954. The last time Kelly won the Lady Byng with Toronto in 1961 came as a center. Meanwhile, Campbell won the Lady Byng with the Florida Panthers in 2011-12.
In the Stanley Cup Playoffs, both of the Stanley Cup semifinal series are tied at two games apiece. The Vegas Golden Knights and Montreal Canadiens are all tied up, as are the New York Islanders and Tampa Bay Lightning.