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TPL Profiles :: Kirk Maltby

18 Kirk MALTBY
Left Winger / Guelph, Ontario

AGE :: 36
SIZE :: 6-0 / 185
ACQUIRED :: 1996 Trade with Edmonton [for Daniel McGillis]
CONTRACT :: Final Year of a 3-year deal [2010]
CAP HIT :: $883,333
DRAFT :: Selected by Edmonton in the 1992 draft [3 / 65]
EXPERIENCE :: 2009-10 will be his 16th NHL season – and 13th with the Red Wings
LIKELY ROLE :: Fourth line winger

ACCOMPLISHMENTS :: 1997 Stanley Cup Champion, 1998 Stanley Cup Champion, 2002 Stanley Cup Champion, 2008 Stanley Cup Champion

1. Relentless penalty killer
2. Agitator capable of drawing dumb penalties
3. One of the five guys to win all four Cups with the Wings

ONE REASON TO HATE HIM :: Having to wait two decades for Landon or Leighton to be the next Red Wing Maltby.

RANDOM FACT :: Of the 264 players selected in the 1992 draft, only Roman Hamrlik has played more NHL games than Kirk Maltby.

1. Ability to get under opponents’ skin
2. Penalty killing
3. Poise
4. Unbelievably consistent
5. Ups his game in the post-season
1. Declining speed
2. Occasional untimely penalty

ONE-LINER :: “When you need that extra hit, he’s there.” – Chris Chelios

HE’S A FAVORITE OF :: Hard-working, underappreciated, smallish guys and gals who were probably told they didn’t have the stuff to be a long-time contributor.

BIO :: After very productive junior career, Kirk Maltby was drafted by the Oilers in the third round of the 1992 draft. After two-plus seasons in Edmonton, he was traded to the Red Wings for defenseman Dan McGillis – who went to a respectable career with the Oilers, Flyers, Sharks, Bruins and Devils.
Few could predict what Maltby would mean to the Red Wings during their dynastic ‘90s and ‘00s. As one of two permanent members of the Grind Line, his dedication to hustle paced the energy and grit that were integral parts of the 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008 Stanley Cup Championships.
Paired with Kris Draper, the two would form one of the greatest penalty killing tandems in recent memory. It’s difficult to remember a shorthanded situation that – at some point during the two minutes – didn’t involve Kirk Maltby. In addition to eating valuable kill time, Maltby can be relied upon to net a goal or 14 (a career-high, attained in 1998, 2003, and 2004). Of his 124 career NHL goals, 20 came shorthanded.

FUTURE :: At 36, Maltby is clearly on the downward side of the mountain, though still a very productive hockey player. His short-handed time-on-ice per game has declined sharply the last few years (as seen below) – probably a result of the emergence of Pavel, Hank, and Mule moreso than Maltby’s play. He’s entering the final year of his contract, and it’s safe to assume that a grinder like Justin Abdelkader or Darren Helm will take his place on the Red Wings in the very near future. If 09-10 is to be Kirk Maltby’s swan song in the Winged Wheel, he deserves 41 home-crowd standing ovations for his 13 full seasons of dedication to the red and white.
Photo Credit: Jamie Squire, Getty Images North America