Pavel Datsyuk

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Pavel Datsyuk
Pavel Datsyuk 2012.jpg
Born (1978-07-20) July 20, 1978 (age 36)
Sverdlovsk, Russian SFSR, USSR
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 198 lb (90 kg; 14 st 2 lb)
Shoots Left
NHL team
Former teams
Detroit Red Wings
Spartak/Dynamo Yekaterinburg
Ak Bars Kazan
HC Dynamo Moscow
HC CSKA Moscow
National team  Russia
NHL Draft 171st overall, 1998
Detroit Red Wings
Playing career 1996–present

Pavel Valerievich Datsyuk (Russian: Па́вел Вале́рьевич Дацю́к, IPA: [ˈpavʲɪl dɐˈtsʊk]; born July 20, 1978) is a Russian professional ice hockey player and alternate captain for the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League (NHL). He has won the Frank J. Selke Trophy in the 2007–08, 2008–09, and 2009–10 NHL season. He is also considered one of the most talented players of all time. [1]

Datsyuk also won four consecutive Lady Byng Memorial Trophies, from 2006 to 2009 for performance and sportsmanship. He was nominated for the Hart Memorial Trophy as the league's most valuable player following the 2008–09 season. Datsyuk won the Stanley Cup in 2002 and 2008 with the Red Wings.[2]

Early years[edit]

Datsyuk was born in Sverdlovsk (Cвердловск) (now Yekaterinburg), in the Urals region of Russia. His parents have called him by his short name "Pasha" from an early age. His childhood had more than its fair share of difficulties, especially at the age of 16, when his mother died.[3] While Datsyuk 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. The boy “with the twitchy walk”[3] caught the eye of Krikunov, but not on the ice. Instead, Datsyuk excelled on the soccer field, where his anticipation, vision and intelligence were more apparent. Under Krikunov, Datsyuk evolved into a particularly efficient two-way player, and he began to draw wider attention among Russian hockey fans.[3] Despite his early successes, however, he went undrafted in the 1996 and 1997 NHL drafts.

Personal life[edit]

At the age of 18, Datsyuk met his future wife Svetlana in Sverdlovsk, Russia. They married three years later, and had a daughter named Elizabeth in 2004.[4] Datsyuk is known as the Magic Man.[5] He has also mentioned that he is a Russian Orthodox Christian.[6] On April 23, 2014, Datsyuk's wife gave birth to their second child, a daughter named Vasilisa.[7]

Playing career[edit]


Datsyuk was first noticed by Detroit Red Wings Director of European Scouting Håkan Andersson in the summer of 1997–98.[8] Andersson was in Moscow to scout defenceman Dmitri Kalinin, but the one who caught his eye was Datsyuk, "this little guy on the other team." Andersson made another trip to see Datsyuk and would have gone a third time; however, his flight was canceled because of a storm.[8] A scout from the St. Louis Blues was on the plane as well, and as a result of that storm, Andersson believes he is the only NHL scout to have seen Datsyuk play prior to the 1998 NHL Entry Draft, when the Red Wings drafted him 171st overall.[8]


Early years

When Datsyuk 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 him eventually, causing him to sit out a clump of games at the end of the year in preparation for the playoffs. He contributed three goals and three assists to the Red Wings' 2002 Stanley Cup run.

Datsyuk warms up before a game

Expectations were high for Datsyuk's second season, particularly with the addition of another highly touted prospect to the team, Henrik Zetterberg. Zetterberg replaced Devereaux on the Datsyuk-Hull line, and the famous version of the "Two Kids and an Old Goat Line" was born. He played only 64 games because of a knee injury but ended up with 51 points in the 2003 season. His playoff performance was a bit disappointing that year, but the same could be said about the entire Red Wings team. The team was swept by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in the first round, and Datsyuk was held pointless.

2003–04 NHL season

The departure of Sergei Fedorov in the 2003 off-season made room for Datsyuk to rise to prominence on the Red Wings. He took full advantage of his extra ice time, where his playmaking skills elevated him to the ranks of legitimate scorers in the NHL. Datsyuk earned a spot in the 2004 NHL All-Star Game. In the playoffs, he had no goals and six assists through 12 games before the Wings were eliminated in the second round by the Calgary Flames.

2004-05 NHL lockout

He was a restricted free agent during the 2004–05 offseason 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 go into salary arbitration and played with Dynamo Moscow during the 2004–05 NHL lockout. On September 4, 2005, Datsyuk signed a one-year contract with Avangard Omsk of the Russian Superleague (RSL),[9] and Moscow Dynamo matched the offer two days later.[10]

On September 19, 2005, the day the arbitration committee of the RSL was set to determine which club had Datsyuk's rights, Datsyuk agreed to a two-year deal with the Red Wings for a total of US$7.8 million.[10]

NHL career[edit]

2005–06 NHL season

During the 2005–06 season, Datsyuk's high level of play combined with his sportsmanship (just 22 penalty minutes for the entire season) won him the Lady Byng Trophy,[11] the first of four consecutive awards. Datsyuk also earned a spot on the Russian team for the 2006 Winter Olympics.

2006–07 NHL season

During the 2006–07 season, Datsyuk debuted Reebok's new hockey stick with holes bored into the shaft to make it more aerodynamic, dubbed the 9KO.[12] 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 contract extension with the Red Wings for US$46.9 million. He helped the Red Wings get to the Western Conference Finals against the eventual Stanley Cup champion Anaheim Ducks, contributing 16 points in 18 games.

2007–08 NHL season

In 2007–08, Datsyuk was voted by the NHL fans, along with teammates Nicklas Lidström and Henrik Zetterberg, to start for the Western Conference in the 2008 NHL All-Star Game at Philips Arena in Atlanta. He went on to have a career year with a team-high 97 points in 82 games, also leading Red Wings forwards in blocked shots. In leading the team in scoring, he joined Ted Lindsay, Gordie Howe and Steve Yzerman as the only players in franchise history to do so in three consecutive seasons. Going 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 three of the Western Conference Finals, en route to a 2008 Stanley Cup Finals meeting with the Pittsburgh Penguins. In game six, Datsyuk recorded two assists in a 3–2 win to clinch the team's 11th Stanley Cup title and its fourth in 11 years.

Datsyuk hoisting the Stanley Cup

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), Datsyuk was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the league's best defensive forward. With just 20 penalty minutes, he also won the Lady Byng trophy.[13] In voting for the Selke, Datsyuk 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, Datsyuk received 985 points (75 first place votes). In addition, Datsyuk 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. Datsyuk and Ron Francis are the only players to have been awarded both the Selke and Lady Byng trophies during their careers.

2008–09 NHL season

Datsyuk was selected to his third NHL All-Star Game in 2009, but because of a hip injury he did not attend.[14] However, as per a new league policy that states players must demonstrate injury by missing at least one game prior to the All-Star Game, Datsyuk was suspended one game, along with teammate Nicklas Lidström, for not attending.[15]

Datsyuk finished the 2008–09 season with 97 points (32 goals and 65 assists), matching his career high. He 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.[16] Datsyuk also received a nomination for the Best NHL Player Award at the ESPYs but lost to Sidney Crosby.[17]

2009–10 NHL season

Datsyuk finished with his lowest point total since the lockout in the 2009–10 season with 70 points in 82 games. As a result of early season injuries to sniper Johan Franzén, center Valtteri Filppula and defenseman Niklas Kronwall, the Red Wings struggled to find consistency. However, a strong finish escalated the team from ninth place in February to fifth, and another 100-point season. Datsyuk 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. The Red Wings, however, lost in five games to the San Jose Sharks.

2010–11 NHL season

Datsyuk achieved a Gordie Howe hat trick on the opening night of the 2010–11 NHL season against the Anaheim Ducks with a goal, an assist and a fight with opposing star player Corey Perry. Datsyuk was yet again impressive in the 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), Datsyuk almost led his team back from the deficit to win the series. A Game 5 winning assist to Tomas Holmström's goal, a Game 6 winning assist to Valtteri Filppula's goal, and a Game 7 late backhand goal highlights Datsyuk's heroics in an eventual losing effort.

2011–12 NHL season

As a tribute to Ruslan Salei, Datsyuk wore jersey #24 during the 2011 pre-season. Datsyuk was an early season candidate for the Hart Trophy winner until a knee injury in February caused the Red Wings to fall apart. The Wings dropped from first place in February to fifth, drawing the Nashville Predators in the first round, losing 4–1. Datsyuk finished with 67 points in 70 games for the regular season, and was also named to the 2012 NHL All-Star Game.

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


As the NHL entered its second lockout in eight years, Datsyuk followed other prominent names such as Alexander Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin to head overseas. Datsyuk signed with CSKA Moscow of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) in September.[18] Datsyuk tallied 36 points in 31 games.

During the shortened 2012–13 season, Datsyuk managed 49 points in 47 games. The Red Wings would make it to the second round of the playoffs, being defeated by the Chicago Blackhawks in seven games on an overtime goal by Brent Seabrook, despite being ahead in the series 3–1. Later in the off-season, Datsyuk signed a three-year extension to stay with Detroit.

Awards and achievements[edit]


* did not attend


Pavel Datsyuk IHWC 2012 (2).JPG
Datsyuk warms up during a game in Stockholm, Sweden
Medal record
Competitor for  Russia
Ice hockey
Olympic Games
Bronze 2002 Salt Lake City
World Championships
Bronze 2005 Vienna
Silver 2010 Cologne
Gold 2012 Helsinki
  • World Championship Best Forward — 2010
  • World Championship All-Star Team — 2010
  • Voted Best Russian NHL Player by Russian NHL Players – Kharlamov Trophy[20]
  • Named Captain of the Russian men's national ice hockey team for the 2014 Winter Olympics

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season and playoffs[edit]

    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 HC 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
NHL totals 824 272 532 804 206 145 39 69 108 49
RSL totals 168 42 60 102 50 23 9 11 20 16


Year Team Event Result   GP G A Pts PIM
2001 Russia WC 6th 7 0 4 4 0
2002 Russia Oly 3rd 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 3rd 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 2nd 6 6 1 7 0
2012 Russia WC 1st 10 3 4 7 2
2014 Russia Oly 5th 5 2 4 6 0
Senior totals 66 19 32 51 14


  1. ^ "".  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ "The Datsyukian Heaven". 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "Russian "Spider" in the Motor City". Washington Post. 2007. Retrieved 2009-06-02. 
  4. ^ "Pavel Datsyuk's wife Svetlana Datsyuk". 2013-03-14. Retrieved 2014-04-07. 
  5. ^ ‘Where Was The Magic Man Born?’ Siri Knows
  6. ^ Pavel Datsyuk, asked about Russia's anti-gay law: 'I'm an orthodox, and that says it all'
  7. ^
  8. ^ a b c Albom, Mitch (April 16, 2009). "Pavel Datsyuk reveals a deeper, thoughtful, funny side using native tongue". The Detroit Free Press. p. 5. Retrieved 2009-05-07. 
  9. ^ Kulfan, Ted (2005). "Russian team signs Datsyuk". The Detroit News. Retrieved 2007-02-11. 
  10. ^ a b "IIHF News: September news from around the hockey world". 2005. Retrieved 2007-02-11. 
  11. ^ Coffey, Phil (2006). "Thornton, Lidstrom big winners at Awards Show". Retrieved 2007-02-11. 
  12. ^ Grossman, Evan (2007). "Pushing the hockey envelope". Retrieved 2007-02-11. 
  13. ^ Ted Kulfan. "Red Wings get hat trick at 'NHL Awards Show'". The Detroit News. Retrieved 2008-06-13. 
  14. ^ "Injuries will keep Datsyuk, Lidstrom out of All-Star game lineup". Detroit Free Press. 2009-01-20. Retrieved 2009-01-21. 
  15. ^ "Crosby attends All-Star game, Datsyuk, Lidstrom punished for sitting out". Canadian Press. 2009-01-23. Retrieved 2009-01-28. 
  16. ^ Red Wings' Pavel Datsyuk wins Selke, Lady Byng; Zdeno Chara ends Nicklas Lidstrom's Norris run. 18 June 2009. Retrieved on 2012-01-01.
  17. ^ "2009 ESPY Awards, Sports Star Nominees, Winners, TV Schedule, Pictures". Retrieved 2009-07-17. 
  18. ^ "Red Wings' Pavel Datsyuk signs with Russian club for duration of NHL lockout". Retrieved 2014-04-07. 
  19. ^ a b "Hockey Night in Canada / NHLPA Player Poll". Retrieved 2012-02-20. 
  20. ^ Павел Дацюк: "До Харламова мне как до Луны. Но я очень рад этой победе!". 15 April 2011. Retrieved on 2012-01-01.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Brad Richards
Lady Byng Memorial Trophy winner
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009
Succeeded by
Martin St. Louis
Preceded by
Thomas Vanek
Winner of the NHL Plus/Minus Award
Succeeded by
Award discontinued
Preceded by
Rod Brind'Amour
Frank J. Selke Trophy winner
2008, 2009, 2010
Succeeded by
Ryan Kesler