Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews took home the Frank J. Selke Trophy for the first time in his career Friday afternoon, narrowly edging out Patrice Bergeron, who won the award last season.
Toews beat out Bergeron by a mere 10 points (1260-1250) in voting for the award, which is given annually to the NHL’s top defensive forward, though the Bruins center received more first-place votes (78-75).
The other finalist, Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk, finished a distant third in voting with 737 points (eight first-place votes).
In captaining Chicago to the NHL’s best record, Toews ranked third in the league in plus-minus (plus-28) and tied for second with 559 faceoffs won.
Bergeron was close behind with 549 faceoffs won, despite missing six games due to injury, and was the only centerman with more than 300 draws to post a face-off percentage above 60 percent (62.1). He ranked second among Boston skaters in assists (22), tied for third in points (32) and led the squad in plus-minus (plus-24) while leading all Bruins forwards in average time on ice (19:08).
Both players were workhorses during Wednesday night’s three-overtime epic in Chicago, combining for 100:04 of ice time. Bergeron was the only one of the two to get on the scoresheet — with a goal early in the third period — but Toews’ Blackhawks came away with a 4-3 win to take a 1-0 lead in the Stanley Cup Final.
Though he fell short of the Selke, Bergeron did garner some hardware on awards night, earning the King Clancy Memorial Trophy as the player that “best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy humanitarian contribution in his community.”
Bergeron’s contributions to the team on the ice are undeniable, but he has also been active in the community since first coming to Boston in 2004. His most notable charitable endeavor comes in the form of his Patrice’s Pals program, which brings patients from local hospitals and other children’s organizations to TD Garden to experience Bruins games.
“It means a lot, it’s a huge honor. Obviously, any time you have the chance to help out the community, it’s something that speaks a lot to me and I want to do,” Bergeron said in a statement released by the team. “Like I said it’s a huge honor, and I’m very happy about it. I like to lead by example and just work as hard as I can on and off the ice and help whoever I can.”
Toews was also a finalist for the Bridgestone Messier Leadership Award given “to the player who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice during the regular season,” but was beaten out by Ottawa’s Daniel Alfredsson.
In all, the NHL announced six award recipients Friday afternoon. Ottawa’s Paul McLean earned the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s top coach, Pittsburgh’s Ray Shero was named general manager of the year, Lightning captain Martin St. Louis won the Lady Byng Trophy for sportsmanship and Wild goalie Josh Harding was awarded the Bill Masterton Trophy, given annually to the “player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey.”
Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid, who required emergency surgery mid-season after a blood clot was discovered in his shoulder, was also a finalist for the Masterton Trophy.
The winners of the Hart (most valuable player), Vezina (top goaltender), Norris (top defenseman), Calder (top rookie) and Ted Lindsay (“most outstanding player”) awards will be announced prior to Game 2 on Saturday.
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