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Pavel Datsyuk
Pavel datsyuk.png
Born 20 July 1978 (1978-07-20) (age 40)
Sverdlovsk, Russian SFSR, URS
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 194 lb (88 kg; 13 st 12 lb)
Position Center
Shoots Left
KHL team SKA Saint Petersburg
Played for Spartak Yekaterinburg
Ak Bars Kazan
Dynamo Moscow
CSKA Moscow
Detroit Red Wings
National team Template:Country data RUS
NHL Draft 171st overall, 1998
Detroit Red Wings
Playing career 1996–present

Pavel Datsyuk (born Pavel Valerievich Datsyuk on July 20, 1978) is a Russian professional ice hockey player who is currently playing for SKA Saint Petersburg of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).

He also played for the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League (NHL) from 2001 to 2016.

Playing CareerEdit

Playing Career in RussiaEdit

Even though Pavel displayed above-average hockey skills, he was often overlooked by scouts because of his smaller size.

He began playing for the farm club of Dynamo Yekaterinburg in the mid-1990s, though he seemed headed for an undistinguished career until noted Olympic trainer Vladimir Krikunov began coaching the team.

Under Krikunov, Pavel evolved into a particularly efficient two-way player and he began to draw wider attention among Russian hockey fans. Despite his early successes, however, he went undrafted in the 1996 and 1997 NHL Entry drafts.

Pavel was first noticed by Detroit Red Wings Director of European Scouting Hakan Andersson in the summer of 1997–98. Andersson was in Moscow to scout defenceman Dmitri Kalinin, but the one who caught his eye was Pavel, described as "this little guy on the other team."

Andersson made another trip to see Pavel and would have gone a third time even though his flight was canceled due to a storm.

A scout from the St. Louis Blues was scheduled to fly on the plane as well and as a result of the storm, Andersson believes he was the only NHL scout to have seen him play prior to the 1998 NHL Entry Draft when the Red Wings drafted him 171st overall.

NHL CareerEdit

2002–2005

When Pavel began his NHL career for the Red Wings, his mentors (including Soviet stars Igor Larionov and Sergei Fedorov as well as Detroit captain Steve Yzerman) helped him learn his way around the NHL. He was put on a line with Brett Hull and Boyd Devereaux and had a moderately productive first year.

The length and difficulty of the NHL season got to Pavel eventually, forcing him to sit out a number of games at the end of the year in preparation for the Stanley Cup playoffs. He contributed three goals and three assists to the Red Wings' 2002 Stanley Cup run.

Expectations were high for Pavel's second season, particularly with the addition of another highly touted prospect to the team, Henrik Zetterberg. Zetterberg replaced Boyd Devereaux on the Datsyuk-Hull line, and the famous version of the "Two Kids and an Old Goat Line" was born.

Pavel played only 64 games due to a knee injury but ended up with 51 points for the season. His playoff performance was disappointing, however, the same as the entire Red Wings team; Detroit was swept by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in the first round, and Datsyuk was held pointless.

The departure of Sergei Fedorov in the 2003 off-season made room for Pavel to rise to prominence on the Red Wings. He took full advantage of his elevated ice time where his playmaking skills earned him a spot in the 2004 NHL All-Star Game.

In the 2004 playoffs, Pavel had no goals and six assists through 12 games before Detroit was eliminated in the second round by the Calgary Flames.

Pavel became a restricted free agent during the 2004–05 off-season, but could not reach a deal with the Red Wings despite repeated statements by his agent, Gary Greenstin, indicating his desire to stay in Detroit. He chose not to take the salary dispute to arbitration, and instead played with Dynamo Moscow during the 2004-05 NHL lockout.

On September 4, 2005, Pavel signed a one-year contract with Avangard Omsk of the Russian Superleague (RSL) where Dynamo Moscow matched the offer two days later, retaining the player.

On September 19, 2005, the day the arbitration committee of the RSL was set to determine which club had Pavel's rights, he agreed to a two-year deal with the Red Wings for a total of US$7.8 million.

2005–2010

During the 2005–06 season, Pavel's high level of play, combined with his sportsmanship (just 22 penalty minutes for the entire season), won him the Lady Byng Trophy, the first of four consecutive awards. He also earned a spot on the Russian national team for the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy.

During the 2006–07 season, Pavel debuted Reebok's new hockey stick, with holes bored into the shaft to make it more aerodynamic, dubbed the 9KO. He completed the season matching his previous campaign's total of 87 points.

Prior to the beginning of the playoffs, on April 6, 2007, Pavel signed a seven-year, US$46.9 million contract extension with the Red Wings. He then helped Detroit advance to the Western Conference Finals against the eventual Stanley Cup champions, the Anaheim Ducks, contributing 16 points in 18 games.

In 2007–08, Pavel was voted by NHL fans, along with teammates Nicklas Lidström and Henrik Zetterberg, to start for the Western Conference in the 2008 All-Star Game at Philips Arena in Atlanta. He went on to have a career year, scoring a team-high 97 points in 82 games while also leading all Red Wings forwards in blocked shots.

In leading the team in scoring, Pavel joined Ted Lindsay, Gordie Howe and Steve Yzerman as the only players in franchise history to do so in three consecutive seasons.

Entering into the playoffs, he scored his first career NHL hat-trick on May 12, 2008, in a 5–2 win over the Dallas Stars in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals, en route to a meeting in the Finals with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

In Game 6 of the series, Pavel recorded two assists in a 3–2 win to clinch the team's 11th Stanley Cup title and its fourth in 11 years.

Having led the NHL in 2007–08 with a plus-minus of +41 and 144 takeaways (58 more than Mike Modano's second-best total of 86), Pavel was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the League' best defensive forward. With just 20 penalty minutes, he also won the Lady Byng Trophy.

In voting for the Selke, Pavel received 537 points (43 first place votes) while John Madden of the New Jersey Devils received 447 points and Datsyuk's linemate Henrik Zetterberg received 425 points.

In voting for the Lady Byng, Pavel received 985 points (75 first place votes). In addition, he became the first NHL player to win the Lady Byng three consecutive times in over 70 years since Frank Boucher of the New York Rangers won from 1933 to 1935.

Pavel and Ron Francis are the only players to have been awarded both the Selke and Lady Byng trophies during their careers.

Pavel was selected to his third NHL All-Star Game in 2009, but due to a hip injury, he did not participate. However, as per a newly formed League policy stating players must demonstrate injury by missing at least one game prior to the All-Star Game, he was suspended one game (along with teammate Nicklas Lidstrom) for not attending.

Pavel finished the 2008–09 season with 97 points (32 goals and 65 assists), matching his career high. He also won the Frank J. Selke Trophy, beating out the Philadelphia Flyers' Mike Richards and the Vancouver Canucks' Ryan Kesler and won the Lady Byng for the fourth consecutive season.

Pavel also received a nomination for the Best NHL Player Award at the ESPYs, but he lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby.

Pavel finished with his lowest end-of-season point total since the lockout in the 2009–10 season, scoring 70 points in 82 games.

As a result of early season injuries to sniper Johan Franzen, center Valtteri Filppula and defenceman Niklas Kronwall, the Red Wings struggled to find consistency. However, a strong finish escalated the team from ninth place in the Western Conference in February to fifth place, and another 100-point season.

Pavel scored the first two goals in Game 7 of the first round against the Phoenix Coyotes, including a breakaway deke on Ilya Bryzgalov that sent the Wings to the second round for the fourth consecutive playoff season.

However, the Red Wings lost in five games to the San Jose Sharks.

2010–2016

Pavel achieved a Gordie Howe hat trick on the opening night of the 2010–11 season against the Anaheim Ducks with a goal, an assist and a fight, which came against Corey Perry. He was yet again impressive in the 2011 playoffs, leading his team with 15 points in 11 games.

As the Red Wings fell behind 3–0 to the San Jose Sharks in the second round (which also happened the previous year), Pavel almost led his team back from the deficit to win the series; a Game 5-winning assist to Tomas Holmstrom's goal, a Game 6-winning assist to Valtteri Filppula's goal and a Game 7 late backhand goal highlighted Pavel's heroics in an eventual losing effort.

During the entirety of the 2011 pre-season, Pavel wore jersey number 24 as a tribute to former teammate Ruslan Salei who perished on September 7, 2011 in the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl air disaster, along with 43 others.

He was an early-season candidate for the Hart Memorial Trophy until a knee injury in February forced the Red Wings into a slump.

The team dropped from first place in February to fifth at the end of the season, where they drew the Nashville Predators in the first round, losing the series four games to one.

Pavel finished the season with 67 points in 70 games for the regular season and was also named to the 2012 NHL All-Star Game in Ottawa.

After the retirements of captain Nicklas Lidström and Tomas Holmström in the 2012 off-season, Datsyuk became the only active Red Wing left from the 2002 Stanley Cup-winning team.

As the NHL entered its second lockout in eight years in 2012–13, Pavel followed other prominent NHL players (such as Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin) in playing overseas; he signed with CSKA Moscow of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) in September. He tallied 36 points in 31 games.

When play resumed in January of 2013, Pavel returned to the Red Wings and managed to score 49 points in 47 games.

Detroit would make it to the second round of the 2013 playoffs before being defeated by the eventual champions, the Chicago Blackhawks in seven games via an overtime goal by Brent Seabrook.

The Red Wings lost the series despite being ahead at one point three games to one. Later in the 2013 off-season, he signed a three-year extension to stay with Detroit.

On February 14, 2016, Pavel became the sixth Red Wing player to reach the 900 point milestone, and the fifth Russian player to do so. He was named the First Star of the Week for the week ending February 15, 2016.

Pavel shared the league lead with five goals and tied for second overall with seven points in four games to help lead the Red Wings to seven out of a possible eight standings points.

On June 18, 2016, Pavel announced that he would head home to Russia to play for SKA St. Petersberg in the KHL for the 2016-17 season, ending his 14-year career with the Detroit Red Wings.

He left the Detroit Red Wings having won two Stanley Cups (in 2002 and 2008), four consecutive Lady Byng trophies (2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009), 953 games played and 918 points.

On June 24, 2016, the Red Wings traded Pavel's contract to the Arizona Coyotes along with the 16th overall pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft in exchange for the 20th overall pick, the 53rd overall pick and Joe Vitale.

Career StatisticsEdit

Regular season and playoffsEdit

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1996–97 Spartak Yekaterinburg RSL 18 2 2 4 4  —  —  —  —  —
1997–98 Dynamo Yekaterinburg RSL 24 3 5 8 4  —  —  —  —  —
1998–99 Dynamo Yekaterinburg RSL 22 12 15 27 12 9 3 7 10 10
1999–00 Ak Bars Kazan RSL 15 1 3 4 4  —  —  —  —  —
2000–01 Ak Bars Kazan RSL 42 9 17 26 10 4 0 1 1 2
2001–02 Detroit Red Wings NHL 70 11 24 35 4 21 3 3 6 2
2002–03 Detroit Red Wings NHL 64 12 39 51 16 4 0 0 0 0
2003–04 Detroit Red Wings NHL 75 30 38 68 35 12 0 6 6 2
2004–05 Dynamo Moscow RSL 47 15 17 32 16 10 6 3 9 4
2005–06 Detroit Red Wings NHL 75 28 59 87 22 5 0 3 3 0
2006–07 Detroit Red Wings NHL 79 27 60 87 20 18 8 8 16 8
2007–08 Detroit Red Wings NHL 82 31 66 97 20 22 10 13 23 6
2008–09 Detroit Red Wings NHL 81 32 65 97 22 16 1 8 9 5
2009–10 Detroit Red Wings NHL 80 27 43 70 18 12 6 7 13 8
2010–11 Detroit Red Wings NHL 56 23 36 59 15 11 4 11 15 8
2011–12 Detroit Red Wings NHL 70 19 48 67 14 5 1 2 3 2
2012–13 CSKA Moscow KHL 31 11 25 36 4  —  —  —  —  —
2012–13 Detroit Red Wings NHL 47 15 34 49 14 14 3 6 9 4
2013–14 Detroit Red Wings NHL 45 17 20 37 6 5 3 2 5 0
2014–15 Detroit Red Wings NHL 63 26 39 65 8 7 3 2 5 2
2015–16 Detroit Red Wings NHL 66 16 33 49 14 5 0 0 0 4
NHL totals 953 314 604 918 228 157 42 71 113 55
RSL totals 168 42 60 102 50 23 9 11 20 16

InternationalEdit

Year Team Event Result   GP G A Pts PIM
2001 Russia WC 6th 7 0 4 4 0
2002 Russia Oly Template:Bronze3 6 1 2 3 0
2003 Russia WC 7th 7 1 4 5 0
2004 Russia WCH 5th 4 1 0 1 0
2005 Russia WC Template:Bronze3 9 3 4 7 0
2006 Russia Oly 4th 8 1 7 8 10
2010 Russia Oly 6th 4 1 2 3 2
2010 Russia WC Template:Silver2 6 6 1 7 0
2012 Russia WC Template:Gold1 10 3 4 7 2
2014 Russia Oly 5th 5 2 4 6 0
2016 Russia WC Template:Bronze3 10 1 10 11 0
Senior totals 76 20 42 62 14

International PlayEdit

Medal record
Competitor for Template:Country data RUS
Ice hockey
Olympic Games
Bronze 2002 Salt Lake City
World Championships
Gold 2012 Helsinki
Silver 2010 Cologne
Bronze 2005 Vienna
Bronze 2016 Russia

Pavel was part of the Russia men's national ice hockey team at the Olympic Games in 2002, 2006, 2010 and the was team captain in 2014.

AccoladesEdit

Olympic Awards

  • World Championship Best Forward: 2010
  • World Championship All-Star Team: 2010
  • Voted Best Russian NHL Player by Russian NHL Players (Kharlamov Trophy)
  • Named Captain of the Russian men's national ice hockey team for the 2014 Winter Olympics

NHL Awards

  • 2x Stanley Cup Champion (Detroit Red Wings): 2002, 2008
  • NHL Second All-Star Team: 2009
  • Selected to the NHL All-Star Game: 2004, 2008, 2009*, 2012
  • Played in the NHL YoungStars Game: 2002
  • Lady Byng Memorial Trophy: 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009
  • Frank J. Selke Trophy: 2008, 2009, 2010
  • NHL Plus-Minus Award: 2008
  • NHL Offensive Player of the Month: December 2003
  • Carhartt "Hardest Working" Player of the Month: December 2007
  • 2010–11 NHL Players Poll: Hardest to Take the Puck Off of; Cleanest Player.
  • 2011–12 NHL Players Poll: Smartest Player; Most Difficult to Play Against; Hardest to Take the Puck From; Most Difficult to Stop; Cleanest Player; Toughest Forward to Play Against.

Personal LifeEdit

Pavel was born in Sverdlovsk (now called Yekaterinburg) in the Urals region of Russia. His parents have called him by his short name "Pasha" from an early age. He is Russian Orthodox Christian.

His childhood had more than its fair share of difficulties, especially the death of his mother when he was 16 years old.

When he was 18 years old, Pavel met his future wife Svetlana in Sverdlovsk. They married three years later and had a daughter named Elizabeth in 2004. The couple divorced in 2010.

In 2012, Pavel remarried to a woman named Maria and on April 23, 2014, they had a daughter named Vasilisa.