Erie’s Own Jaccob Slavin

Madison Hays, Layout editior

When walking through the main hallway of Erie High School, there is a jersey bearing the number 74 hanging above the gym. Who does this jersey belong to? The answer is Jaccob Slavin. He is a National Hockey League player who grew up in small town Erie, attended Erie High School, and graduated from Erie High School in 2011.

Slavin’s career began when he started ice skating at around age two. He loved being on the ice and soon after started playing ice hockey. The first team he ever played for was the Hyland Hills Jaguars. Slavin played for the Jaguars until he was 13 years old. Afterwards, he played for the Littleton Hawks for one year. Then, until the age of 16, Slavin played for the Colorado Thunderbirds. Soon after, Chicago called his name and he moved to play for the Steel in the United States Hockey League (USHL). Slavin’s first couple years of college were at Colorado College, which is located in Colorado Springs. Since then, he has played for the Carolina Hurricanes organization in the NHL, beginning with the AHL Charlotte Checkers for a couple of months before getting called up to play for the Hurricanes. Slavin was a fourth round pick for the Hurricanes in 2012.

Slavin has earned several noteworthy honors in his career so far.  He was named National Collegiate Hockey Conference Rookie of the Year in 2013 – 2014 with his 25 points as a freshman at Colorado College. Slavin played on the NCHC All-Rookie Team and was on the NCHC All-Star second team. He also had the opportunity to play in the World Junior Championship in Sweden in 2014.

In his most recent season, 2017 – 2018, Slavin contributed 30 points for the Hurricanes. These points came from eight goals and 22 assists. Slavin averages 22:35 of playing time per game. He is plus one for this past season and plus 25 for his overall career. This means that he was on the ice for 25 more goals then what was scored on his team. In Slavin’s overall career, he has a total of 15 goals, 69 assists, which makes a total of 84 points. Slavin leads the hurricanes in many categories, such as blocked shots with 161, takeaways with 83, time on the ice per game, and shorthanded time on ice per game.  He also has the fourth-best plus/minus in franchise history with plus 23. Recently Slavin signed an extension of his contract with the Hurricanes for another seven years.

When asked about his team, the Carolina Hurricanes, Slavin has many positive things to say about it.

“I absolutely love playing for the Hurricanes. The city (Raleigh) is awesome, the rink is a blast, and the fans are great! Of course it would be fun to play for the hometown team, but my wife and I love it in Carolina and hope to be here for a long time!”

Slavin also believes the all of the “Caniacs” are great in Raleigh because they are supportive and can get pretty loud for the players during games.

Slavin played his first ever National Hockey League game for the Hurricanes on November 20, 2015. This game was against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Within the first 14 games he played, he had a total of seven assists. In the same year, Slavin scored his first goal on December 8th. After his debut, he built the reputation of being one of the most promising young defenders.

Slavin has stuck to primarily one position throughout his whole life; defense. Slavin did play goalie for a couple years of his life, however, defense was the position for him. Slavin loves to play defense because he likes to try to shut down the top players from the other team. The list of players he has attempted to shut down are the same ones he watched on television before getting the opportunity to play in the NHL himself.

Slavin’s favorite professional players are defender Nicklas Lidstrom and goal tender Dominik Hasek. Both players are now retired. Lidstrom retired in 2012 and Hasek retired in 2011.

Jaccob Slavin comes from a close family. He has four siblings; Justin Slavin, Jordan (Slavin) Smith, Josiah Slavin, and Jeremiah Slavin. Growing up, everything was a competition between himself and his siblings. The siblings all grew up loving and playing hockey. Slavin is the son of Wendi and Robert Slavin. His two older siblings, Justin and Jordan, gave him his inspiration as he looked up to them from a very young age. Slavin was born on May 1, 1994, in a Denver hospital. He has very fond memories of growing up in Erie. One of his favorites happened when he was in middle school.  He had just had a week off of school for spring break when a two to three day blizzard added on an additional full week of snow days. He and his siblings spent the days building an igloo in their backyard.

Slavin has always been connected with his faith. He grew up as a Christian and has kept his strong faith throughout his whole life, even with hockey. Slavin does not have a pregame ritual. However, he goes into each game with his mindset focused on Christ. He attributes his successful career to God.

During the off-season, Slavin continues to improve his hockey skills with additional conditioning. His workouts include weight lifting, speed and agility training, and lots of sprinting and explosive work. His downtime includes more athletic activities. He plays lots of golf along with spike ball, volleyball, and any other sport he has the opportunity to play.  

Slavin does have some good advice for other athletes who strive to play at an elite level.

“Really work hard and give it 110 percent. The only thing you can control is your work ethic and attitude,” says Slavin.

Slavin worked very hard to be able to graduate from his home town high school. He took very few classes that would not give him credit toward being able to graduate. Slavin graduated a year early in 2011 at the age of 17. He has always been connected with small town Erie and Erie High School.

Slavin adds, “I had a blast at Erie while I was there and I will forever be an EHS Tiger! Oh, and Miss Molly is the best!”

Next time you are flipping through the television channels and come across the Carolina Hurricanes playing a hockey game, cheer on #74 – Erie’s own Jaccob Slavin!