Leland Irving

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Leland Irving
Leland Irving.PNG
Born (1988-04-11) April 11, 1988 (age 26)
Barrhead, AB, CAN
Height 6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Weight 177 lb (80 kg; 12 st 9 lb)
Position Goaltender
Catches Left
SM-Liiga team
Former teams
Jokerit
Calgary Flames
NHL Draft 26th overall, 2006
Calgary Flames
Playing career 2008–present

Leland Bruce Irving (born April 11, 1988) is a Canadian professional ice hockey goaltender, currently playing with Jokerit in the SM-liiga. He was a first round selection of the Calgary Flames, 26th overall at the 2006 NHL Entry Draft and played parts of two National Hockey League (NHL) seasons with the team. He made his NHL debut on December 16, 2011, in a shootout loss to the Florida Panthers and won his first NHL game one week later in his second start, against the Vancouver Canucks.

Early life[edit]

As an eight-year-old, Irving was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare cancer, when a bump resembling an insect bite above his left ear was found to be cancerous. He endured 13 months of chemotherapy to overcome the illness.[1] He continued to play minor hockey throughout his ordeal, and missed only one practice and one game.[2]

As he grew older, he worked over the summers with the excavation company his father Bruce operated in his hometown of Swan Hills, Alberta.[2]

Playing career[edit]

Irving was drafted in the first round, 26th overall, in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft by the Calgary Flames. He played five seasons of major junior hockey in the Western Hockey League (WHL) with the Everett Silvertips. The 2007–08 WHL season was his fifth and final season with the Silvertips; he played 56 games and sported a 2.45 goals against average. He finished his WHL career tied with Bryan Bridges for the league's all-time record for career shutouts with 21 (he was later surpassed the following season by Tyson Sexsmith of the Vancouver Giants).[3]

On January 18, 2007 Irving was signed by the Flames to an entry-level contract. On April 22, 2007 he was assigned to the Omaha Ak-Sar-Ben Knights of the American Hockey League (AHL). He practiced with the club, and dressed in two of the final playoff games behind starter Curtis McElhinney. For the 2008–09 season, Irving was assigned to the Quad City Flames, Calgary's AHL affiliate.

An injury to Flames' backup goaltender Henrik Karlsson led to Irving's recall on December 5, 2011. At the time he was assigned to Calgary, he was the AHL leader in wins (15), shutouts (3) and minutes played (1254).[4] He made his NHL debut on December 16, a 3–2 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers. Irving made 39 saves in the game, and was named third star.[5] He earned his first win in his second start, a 3–1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks, on December 23.[6]

A restricted free agent following the season, Irving publicly considered signing in Europe if he couldn't get a one-way contract from the Flames, but chose to return to Calgary on a one year, two-way deal worth $687,500 for an NHL season.[7] Irving returned to Abbotsford for the start of the 2012–13 AHL season due to the NHL labour dispute. However, a slow start coupled with the outstanding play of Barry Brust and Danny Taylor relegated him to the team's third-string goaltender.[8]

When NHL play resumed, Irving beat out Karlsson for as the job as Flames backup goaltender,[9] but a knee injury to Kiprusoff early in the season elevated him to Calgary's starter.[10] He struggled in the Calgary net and was demoted back to Abbotsford after playing only six games.[11] He posted a 2–1–1 record with a 3.33 GAA and .833 save percentage.[12]

The Flames chose not to sign Irving, who was an unrestricted free agent following the season, to a new contract. Irving opted to go to Finland, signing a tryout agreement with Jokerit of the SM-liiga.[13]

International play[edit]

Medal record
Competitor for  Canada
Men's ice hockey
World U-17 Hockey Challenge
Silver 2005 Alberta
World Junior Hockey Championships
Gold 2007 Sweden

In June 2007, Irving was named to Team Canada as one of three rotating goalies for the 2007 Super Series between Canada and Russia's national under-20 teams. He made his first appearance in the series, starting game 3 on August 31, 2007. He stopped 32 of 34 shots on goal and was awarded as Canada’s Player of the Game. Canada defeated Russia 7-0-1 in eight games. He was a member of Canada's gold-medal winning team at the 2007 World Junior Championships, but did not appear in a game, as Carey Price played the entire tournament. As a player eligible to return for the 2008 tournament, he was expected to make the team, but was instead passed over by the coaches.[14]

Awards[edit]

  • WHL West Second All-Star Team - 2006

Personal life[edit]

Irving is married to Ashley Irving,[15] and they have a daughter, Halle Annie.[16]

Career statistics[edit]

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP W L T/OTL MIN GA SO GAA SV% GP W L MIN GA SO GAA SV%
2003–04 Everett Silvertips WHL 1 0 0 0 8 0 0 0.00 1.000 3 1 0 104 2 0 1.15 .967
2004–05 Everett Silvertips WHL 23 9 8 1 1132 34 2 1.80 .930
2005–06 Everett Silvertips WHL 67 37 22 4 3791 121 4 1.91 .925 12 8 3 747 21 3 1.68 .938
2006–07 Everett Silvertips WHL 48 34 9 3 2802 87 11 1.86 .929 12 6 5 639 30 0 2.82 .887
2007–08 Everett Silvertips WHL 56 27 24 3 3258 133 4 2.45 .919 3 0 3 139 10 0 4.30 .882
2008–09 Quad City Flames AHL 47 24 18 2 2658 99 1 2.23 .912
2009–10 Abbotsford Heat AHL 35 14 17 2 1850 85 1 2.76 .905 1 0 1 14 3 0 12.97 .571
2009–10 Victoria Salmon Kings ECHL 8 2 4 2 490 25 0 3.06 .908
2010–11 Abbotsford Heat AHL 61 30 26 8 3437 40 8 2.30 .913
2011–12 Abbotsford Heat AHL 39 22 13 2 2177 97 3 2.67 .902 1 0 1 60 4 0 4.02 .846
2011–12 Calgary Flames NHL 7 1 3 3 394 21 0 3.20 .912
2012–13 Abbotsford Heat AHL 12 3 7 2 599 34 0 3.40 .884
2012–13 Calgary Flames NHL 6 2 1 1 270 15 0 3.33 .883
NHL totals 13 3 4 4 664 36 0 3.25 .902

References[edit]

  1. ^ Koshan, Terry (2007-01-02). "Hardships overcome". Toronto Sun. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  2. ^ a b Kramer, Lindsay (2009-02-23). "Quad City's Irving already a winner". National Hockey League. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  3. ^ "Sexsmith blanks Cougars". Prince George Citizen. 2008-11-07. Retrieved 2008-11-10. 
  4. ^ Tucker, Cam (2011-12-05). "Abbotsford Heat's Leland Irving recalled by Calgary Flames". Abbotsford Times. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  5. ^ "Sean Bergenheim scores twice to help Panthers get past Flames". ESPN. 2011-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  6. ^ "Flames' Irving picks up first win against Canucks". The Sports Network. 2011-12-23. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  7. ^ Hall, Vicki (2012-07-28). "Irving re-signs with the Flames". Calgary Herald. p. D5. 
  8. ^ Sportak, Randy (2013-01-13). "Irving battles to be backup". Calgary Sun. p. S5. 
  9. ^ Johnson, George (2013-01-18). "Irving announced as Flames' backup goaltender". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2013-08-21. 
  10. ^ "Flames' Kiprusoff to miss two more weeks with MCL sprain". The Sports Network. 2013-02-12. Retrieved 2013-08-21. 
  11. ^ Hall, Vicki (2013-02-17). "Flames goalie Leland Irving demoted after poor showing". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2013-08-21. 
  12. ^ "Leland Irving player card". National Hockey League. Retrieved 2013-08-21. 
  13. ^ "Former Flames goalie Irving lands tryout with Finnish club Jokerit". Calgary Herald. 2013-08-21. Retrieved 2013-08-21. 
  14. ^ Down, John (2011-12-11). "Adversity spurs goalkeeper Irving". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 2011-12-24. 
  15. ^ Sheldon, Dave (2011-05-04). "Catching up with Leland Irving". Abbotsford Heat Hockey Club. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  16. ^ MacFarlane, Steve (2012-04-06). "Flames snapshots". Calgary Sun. p. S7. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Matt Pelech
Calgary Flames' first round draft pick
2006
Succeeded by
Mikael Backlund