Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin is one of the best defensemen in the National Hockey League.
Before Coming Into The NHL
At the NHL Entry Draft in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on June 23rd in 2012, the Carolina Hurricanes drafted defenseman Slavin in the 4th round 120th overall.
Slavin played for the USHL’s Chicago Steel during his draft year and the year after he was drafted. He put up an impressive stat line of 8 goals and 55 assists in 122 games.
To put this into perspective in Slavin’s first full season with the Steel he put up 3 goals and 27 assists in 60 games. Star Flyers defenseman, Ivan Provorov, put up 6 goals and 13 assists in 57 games in his rookie season in the USHL.
Slavin was good offensively in his first two seasons with the Chicago Steel. He plays a puck moving defenseman role and he has a great all-around game.
After his two years with the Steel, Slavin, committed to Colorado College where he put up 10 goals and 32 assists in 66 games. This is where Slavin really broke out and showed to the Hurricanes that they would not regret picking him.
Arrival To The NHL
Following his successful season with Colorado College and playing for USA at the World Junior Championship, Slavin, joined the Carolina Hurricanes.
Slavin had a great, yet very underrated rookie season (2015-2016 regular season). He scored 2 goals and assisted on 18 more through 63 games. His Fenwick For % was above average at 51.8.
In his second season, Slavin continued to get better. At the end of the season, he had 5 goals and 29 assists. Plus, his Fenwick For % increased to 52.5 in 82 games.
Last season, Slavin’s point totals decreased, but his Fenwick For % (54.1) increased. This is where he really started developing into that all-around defenseman. Though his point total decreased his defense seemed to get better.
Focusing on this Season and the future
This season, Slavin, currently has 5 goals and 19 assists in 51 games while having a superb 55.2 Fenwick For %.
He has been great this season though the offense has struggled to score. He is one of the reasons why the Carolina Hurricanes defense has been great.
I see him making the All-Star game a lot in the future. He’s a star, yet he’s very underrated. As of right now, he is locked up for 7 more years with a cap hit of 5.3 million USD. At the moment, that looks like a steal of the contract. Most top 2 defensemen in the NHL who have signed long contract are earning quite a bit more. Oliver Ekman-Larsson recently signed an eight year extension in which he carries an 8.25 million USD cap hit. In addition, Brent Burns and P.K. Subban earn quite a bit too. Both of their contracts are north of 8 million USD per season. So, Slavin’s contract truly is a steal.
With Slavin’s play only improving, keep your eyes peeled for the future because Slavin might be Norris Trophy winner soon enough.
stats from NHL.com, hockey-reference.com and eliteprospects.com
salary research from CapFriendly.com
featured image photo credit – Josh Tessler