Elvis Merzlikins Joins Steve Mason As Only Blue Jackets Goaltender To Make NHL's All-Rookie Team

By 1OB Staff on September 24, 2020 at 8:05 am
Elvis Merzlikins makes a glove save as Toronto Maple Leafs forward John Tavares
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Elvis Merzlikins may not have won any NHL trophies, but he represented the Columbus Blue Jackets well during award season.

The 26-year old finished 5th in both Vezina Trophy (top goalie) and Calder Trophy (top rookie) voting while also being named to the NHL All-Rookie team, joining Steve Mason as the only two Blue Jackets' goaltenders in franchise history to claim the honor.

After a rocky start to his NHL career, he bounced back in a major way, ultimately leading all NHL rookie netminders (min 20 games) in goals-against average, save percentage and shutouts, while also ranking third in wins despite platooning time with Joonas Korpisalo.

He fared well among his non-rookie peers, as well. Among all NHL goalies, he ranked second in shutouts and fifth in goals-against average and save percentage.

Merzlikins wasn't the only Columbus player to be recognized during award season. Zach Werenski and Seth Jones also finished 8th and t-11th, respectively, in Norris Trophy voting, which goes to the top defenseman in the NHL. 

The Latvian is the fifth player in Blue Jackets franchise history to be named to the NHL's All-Rookie Team, joining defenseman Rostislav Klesla (2001-02), forward Rick Nash (2002-03), the aforementioned Mason (2008-09) and defenseman Zach Werenski (2016-17).

Merzlikins is signed with the Blue Jackets through 2021-22 at $4M per season.