TPL Profiles :: Darren Helm

43 Darren HELM
Center / St. Andrews, Manitoba

AGE :: 22
SIZE :: 6-0 / 182
ACQUIRED :: 2005 Draft [5th Round / 132nd Overall]
CONTRACT :: Final Year of Entry-Level Deal [2010]
CAP HIT :: $599,444
EXPERIENCE :: 2009-10 will be his first full season in the NHL

LIKELY ROLE :: Third or fourth line center

ACCOMPLISHMENTS :: 2008 Stanley Cup Champion, 2007 World Junior Champion

DEFINING MOMENT :: Western Conference Finals, Game 5, Penalty Kill

THREE REASONS TO LOVE HIM ::
1. Has never taken a shift off
2. Always comes out of the corner with the puck
3. Plays with enough energy to wake up the crowd and his teammates

ONE REASON TO HATE HIM :: Insane jealousy.

RANDOM FACT :: Holds the NHL record for most post-season goals (six) before scoring first regular season goal.

STRENGTHS ::
1. Ungodly speed
2. Great hands
3. Insanely hard worker
4. Strong in the faceoff circle
5. Confident in key situations
6. Wonderful penalty killer
7. Smart two-way player

WEAKNESSES ::
1. Less-than-ideal size
2. Underwhelming shot
3. Injury risk given his size and style

ONE-LINER :: “Every time he’s on the ice, something happens.” — Mike Babcock.

BEST THING EVER WRITTEN ABOUT HIM :: This article from Dirty Games.

HE’S A FAVORITE OF :: Both of us at The Production Line, my boy Clay Hurley, this young looker, those who yearn for the Winnipeg Jets, and anyone else with a pulse.

BIO :: Born in 1987 (Christ, I’m old), about 15 miles northeast of Winnipeg, Helm played in a Junior B league consisting of a handful of teams in Manitoba before eventually finding his way to the Medicine Hat Tigers of the WHL. Helm was not ranked by CSS going into the 2005 Draft, but the Wings wisely used their fifth round pick to select him. He played two more seasons of Junior – culminating in a Memorial Cup Final appearance and a World Junior Championship under his belt.

In 2007, Helm reported to Grand Rapids, but was called up to Detroit on occasion before finally sticking with the big club throughout the playoffs, adding a Stanley Cup to his young but impressive resume. The following season saw Helm again demoted to the Griffins, although he was clearly one of the twelve best forwards in the organization. His waiver status made him a casualty of the roster crunch and he spent the majority of the season in the AHL. Helm was called up to Detroit three separate times before once again being a regular for the Stanley Cup playoffs.

FUTURE :: There is no question that Darren Helm is in Detroit to stay. As a matter of fact, you can plan on seeing #43 (assuming he keeps that number) in red and white for a long, long time. Darren Helm has all the makings of a folk-hero to the hardworking fans in a blue collar town. Quite frankly, he works his ass off every single shift, goes into the dirty areas, and always seems to come out with more energy than he went in with.

RELEVANT STATS ::

title photo credit: Dave Reginek, NHLI, via Getty Images and The Hockey News.

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