Max Pacioretty is one of three finalists for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, presented to the one who “best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.”
Great for Max. Our guy rebounded from the infamous Chara assault and enjoyed his best season ever, leading his team with 33 goals and 32 assists for 65 points. Max has become a bonafide power forward, and will be a key guy, of course, in the Habs success next season.
The other two finalists are Joffrey Lupul of the Leafs and the Sens’ Daniel Alfredsson.
Bill Masterton played just one season in the NHL, 1968 with the Minnesota North Stars, and it was during this campaign that he was checked hard in a game against the Oakland Seal, fell back and cracked his head on the ice, suffering a brain hemorrage. He died two days after the event.
Masterton hadn’t been wearing a helmet, and his death got the ball rolling for players to finally put protection on their heads. But it still took years before everyone got on board.