Darren Helm

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Darren Helm
Darren Helm 2012.png
Born (1987-01-21) January 21, 1987 (age 27)
Winnipeg, MB, CAN
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 192 lb (87 kg; 13 st 10 lb)
Position Center/Left Wing
Shoots Left
NHL team Detroit Red Wings
National team  Canada
NHL Draft 132nd overall, 2005
Detroit Red Wings
Playing career 2007–present
Helm celebrates with the Stanley Cup in 2008.

Darren Helm (born January 21, 1987) is a Canadian professional ice hockey player who is currently playing for the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League (NHL).

Playing career[edit]

Junior career[edit]

Helm started his junior playing career with the Selkirk Fishermen of the Keystone Junior Hockey League (KJHL). He led the league in scoring for the 2003–04 season with 73 points in 34 games,[1] en route to helping the Fishermen to a league championship. He also appeared in 6 games for the Selkirk Steelers of the Junior A Manitoba Junior Hockey League (MJHL) that season.

The following season, in 2004–05, Helm went on to play for the Medicine Hat Tigers of the Western Hockey League, beginning a three-year major junior career. Following a 24-point WHL rookie season, which was complemented by two goals and six assists in thirteen playoff games, Helm was drafted by the Detroit Red Wings in the fifth round, 132nd overall, of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. His second season in the WHL was much more productive as he led his team in scoring with 79 points in 70 games.[1] He also helped the Tigers win the regular season title with a 47-16-9 record for 103 points. While the Tigers swept in the first two rounds of the playoffs that season, they lost the semifinals to the Moose Jaw Warriors.[1] On September 27, 2006, Helm signed a three year entry-level contract with the Red Wings. Nevertheless, he returned to the Tigers for a third and final WHL season in 2006–07 to help lead the team to an Ed Chynoweth Cup as league champions, defeating the Vancouver Giants in a seven-game final round. Earning a berth in the 2007 Memorial Cup, Helm and the Tigers then finished as runner-up to the Giants, who hosted the tournament.

Detroit Red Wings[edit]

In 2007–08, Helm started his professional playing career and was assigned by the Red Wings to their American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins. Near the end of the season, he was called up to Detroit and played his first NHL game on March 13, 2008.[2] Helm remained with the Red Wings for their 2008 playoff run, centering the fourth line, and scored his first NHL goal on May 10, 2008, during game two of the Western Conference finals against the Dallas Stars. He contributed 2 goals and 2 assists in 18 playoff games, helping the Red Wings to the franchise's 11th Stanley Cup.

Despite being able to stick with the NHL club for the last part of his professional rookie season, Helm returned to the AHL in 2008–09. After appearing in 16 regular season games for the Red Wings, however, he was called up once again for the first game of the 2009 playoffs. During game seven of the Western Conference semifinal series against the Anaheim Ducks, Helm scored a crucial goal on a breakaway to give the Wings a 2-0 lead. The Wings won the game and advanced to the Western Conference Finals against the Chicago Blackhawks, where he scored the series-winning goal in overtime of game five. With the goal, Helm became the first player in NHL history to score five playoff goals before scoring a regular season goal.[3] He has since increased his total to six playoff goals before scoring a regular season goal, extending his record.

For the 2009–10 NHL season, Helm was placed as the regular fourth line centre. His speed and determination has led Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock to name Helm as “probably our best player from start to finish.”[4] He had a notable game on New Year's Eve of 2009, when he scored two short-handed goals in a single outing against the Colorado Avalanche.[5] Following the season, the Red Wings signed Helm to a two-year contract extension worth $1.825 million. The contract has an annual cap hit of $912,500.[6]

Helm has developed a reputation of being one of the league's top defensive players, as well as one of the fastest. Quite simply, he is the "Bene Melior Optime" of this hockey era. During the 2010–11 NHL season Helm stepped into a more consistent scoring role, setting career highs in all statistics. During the 2011 playoffs coach Mike Babcock named Helm "an elite player, probably not a fourth-line player"[7]

On June 19, 2012, Helm signed a four-year, $8.5 million contract extension with the Detroit Red Wings.[8]

On March 29, 2014, Helm recorded his first career hat-trick in a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.[9]

International play[edit]

Medal record
Competitor for  Canada
Ice hockey
World Junior Championships
Gold 2007 Canada

Helm participated in the 2007 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships for Team Canada; playing on the second and third lines, he won a gold medal.[1]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
2003–04 Selkirk Steelers MJHL 6 0 3 3 0
2004–05 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL 72 10 14 24 27 13 2 6 8 10
2005–06 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL 70 41 38 79 37 13 5 4 9 2
2006–07 Medicine Hat Tigers WHL 59 25 39 64 53 23 10 12 22 14
2007–08 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 67 16 15 31 30
2007–08 Detroit Red Wings NHL 7 0 0 0 2 18 2 2 4 2
2008–09 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 55 13 24 37 24
2008–09 Detroit Red Wings NHL 16 0 1 1 4 23 4 1 5 4
2009–10 Detroit Red Wings NHL 75 11 13 24 18 12 1 0 1 4
2010–11 Detroit Red Wings NHL 82 12 20 32 16 11 3 3 6 8
2011–12 Detroit Red Wings NHL 68 9 17 26 12 1 0 0 0 0
2012–13 Detroit Red Wings NHL 1 0 0 0 2
2013–14 Grand Rapids Griffins AHL 2 0 0 0 0
2013–14 Detroit Red Wings NHL 42 12 8 20 14 5 0 1 1 0
NHL totals 291 44 59 103 68 70 10 7 17 18

International[edit]

Year Team Event Result GP G A Pts PIM
2007 Canada WJC 1 5 2 0 2 6
Junior totals 5 2 0 2 6

References[edit]

External links[edit]