Kris Letang Named a Finalist for Masterton Trophy

Published on April 30th, 2015
(Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports)

(Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports)

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang was named one of three finalists for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, which is for “the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.” Goaltenders Devan Dubnyk (Minnesota Wild) and Andrew Hammond (Ottawa Senators) were announced as the other two finalists. Letang was nominated last season by Pittsburgh, but was not a finalist. However, he could be the favorite for the award this season. After suffering a stroke just 15 months ago, Letang set career highs in goals, assists and points this past season despite missing some time as a result of different injuries. He was on his way to his first career Norris Trophy before suffering a concussion that ended his season. No offense to the other nominees, but it seems like Dubnyk and Hammond were just two players who came out of nowhere and had success. Dubnyk struggled early in his career and played really well in the second half with Minnesota this past year while Hammond led the Senators to an unforgettable push for the playoffs. While Dubnyk and Hammond were great stories, Letang played his best season after a life-changing event and that should be good enough to win the award. Some players would consider retiring after a stroke or multiple concussions, but that won’t happen with Letang. He loves the game too much. He will look to become the franchise’s third Masterton Trophy winner (Mario Lemieux and Lowell McDonald). The winner will be announced at the NHL Awards on June 24th.

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