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Artemi Panarin is the early favorite for the Calder Trophy

Who else would it be? Panarin is beyond incredible.

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Artemi Panarin is a 24-year-old Russian playing his first season in the NHL. Not even the NHL - he's playing his first season in North America, period. And with 21 points in 21 games, he's not only second in Chicago Blackhawks scoring, but he's first out of all rookies league-wide.

So it should come as no surprise that he's the early favorite for the NHL's rookie of the year. He's the only one playing at a point-per-game pace - although Connor McDavid was close before his injury - and plays the most minutes of any rookie forward, averaging 19:11 a game, with an average of 24.1 shifts nightly.

Panarin had two factors working against him when it came to making the NHL: his size (at 5'11 and 170 lbs., he really is not that big), and the fact that he's Russian, which can scare away teams.

He's currently proving a lot of people wrong, though. What would 29 other teams give to have Panarin on their team? Too bad for them - hopefully this phenomenal start to a rookie season is just the beginning of a long Blackhawks career.