Kirill Kaprizov Reminds Calder Trophy Voters Not to Forget About Marco Rossi

NHL: Minnesota Wild at Columbus Blue Jackets
Aaron Doster-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Wild, along with the rest of the NHL, are enjoying their All-Star break this weekend, but Kirill Kaprizov is the only player on roster actually at the All-Star game festivities in Toronto, where he met with media members on Friday.

Kirill Kaprizov supports Brock Faber… but stans Marco Rossi

Kirill spoke mostly through a translator on Friday but when asked by Jim Cerny (Sportsnaut) about his new teammate, and former Minnesota Gophers defenseman, Brock Faber’s chances of winning the Calder Trophy — awarded to the league’s top rookie (Kaprizov won it in 2021) — the 26-year-old Russian answered without any help, “I hope so!”. Faber is averaging an absurd 24:51 TOI this season, assisting on 24 goals and scoring 4 of his own.

Related: Kirill Kaprizov Wins NHL 1st Star of the Week

But then, with the translator back at his side, Kaprizov turned the conversation to another rookie teammate, centerman Marco Rossi, whose stellar first half (13 goals, 15 assists) has clearly caught the attention of his superstar teammate during, after struggling in his NHL debut last season. Kirill hasn’t ruled Marco out yet either.

Consider Kaprizov impressed [by Faber]. Though he’s also got his eye on another top rookie, Wild forward Marco Rossi.

“We have ‘Fabes’ and Marco Rossi, too. These two guys can win,” Kaprizov said. “These two guys, let’s hope their careers will be great. The main thing is that they will grow as players and the team will grow with them. They will grow together. That’s good for us.”

Jim Cerny – Sportsnaut

Can Rossi upset Faber?

From Kirill Kaprizov’s mouth to a hockey god’s ear? I mean, it’s not impossible that Marco Rossi comes back to upset his teammate as eventual Calder Trophy winner, now that Connor Bedard is likely out of the picture with a broken jaw. It won’t be easy, given Faber is on the ice for nearly 25 minutes per night, but it’s certainly possible.

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Rossi is the one that plays offense and has more opportunities to score goals. And given the level of talent the young Austrian possesses, it’s not crazy to imagine a 2nd half of the season that even Faber can’t keep up with, no matter how often he’s on the ice.

But for now, it’s Brock Faber’s race to lose. Will he be able to hang on? That might depend on the play of his teammate even more than his own. One thing is for sure, though. Kirill Kaprizov will enjoy the show.

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