Last season's Calder Trophy voting was essentially a two-man race, with Vancouver Canucks phenom Elias Pettersson ultimately beating out St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington as the NHL's rookie of the year. Apparently, that decision didn't really sit well with Binnington.
After the Blues beat the Canucks in Vancouver on Tuesday night, Binnington was asked about last season's Calder race and he made it clear that he felt that he should have won the award over Pettersson.
"There's a little bit of that bad taste in my mouth about the outcome last year," Binnington said, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "But he's a talented player, so it's good going up against some of the best."
Binnington was asked to clarify if he felt that he deserved the Calder and he confirmed by saying "yeah" before changing the subject.
There was certainly a case to be made for Binnington to take home the award last season, especially considering the Blues' incredible second-half turnaround just happened to get rolling when the 25-year-old goaltender was called up from the AHL and took over the starting job.
Binnington's numbers last season were tremendous, as he posted a .927 save percentage and 1.89 goals against average over 32 games played while the Blues went 24-5-1 in Binnington's 30 starts. However, the reduced sample size that came with Binnington's mid-season call up may have ultimately cost him the award.
Instead, it went to Pettersson, who spent the entire season at the NHL level and put up solid numbers in Vancouver. The 20-year-old Swede charged out of the gate and captivated with his show-stopping offensive skill set, quickly establishing himself as one of the league's elite young wingers. Though Pettersson's production slowed as the season went along, he still posted 28 goals and 66 points in 71 games with the Canucks.
That was enough to earn Pettersson 151 out of 171 first place votes in the Calder race, while the other 20 first place votes went to Binnington. The Blues goaltender finished second in overall voting.
Although Binnington didn't get to take home the rookie honors, his trophy case isn't exactly empty after his first official NHL season. He was instrumental in leading the Blues to the franchise's first Stanley Cup title, and one would assume he'd take that trophy over a Calder any day.