The Professional Hockey Writers Association named their nominees for the 2018-19 Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy today and the Edmonton Chapter has selected Andrej Sekera.
Andrej Sekera has been picked by @ThePHWA's Edmonton chapter as the #Oilers nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, awarded to the player who best exemplifies qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship & dedication. pic.twitter.com/X3TRoZu00F
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) March 28, 2019
The Masterton Trophy, named after Bill Masterton, the only player in NHL history to die as a direct result of injuries suffered during a game, is awarded to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey.
Sekera has battled through a rough gauntlet of injuries over the past two seasons. He suffered a snapped ACL in the Oilers’ playoff series against the Anaheim Ducks in 2017 and then he suffered a torn Achilles in the off-season. Despite those two major injuries, Sekera returned to Edmonton’s lineup midway through the season and has been excellent.
The full list of nominees is loaded with players with feel-good stories. In the past, we’ve seen the trophy awarded to Brian Boyle, Jason Blake, Saku Koivu, Mario Lemieux, and Phil Kessel for beating cancer, Jaromir Jagr for playing well into his 40s, and Bryan Berard for overcoming an injury that left him legally blind in one of his eyes.
Since the creation of the award in 1968 after Masterton’s death, no Oiler has ever won the award.