The Philadelphia Flyers announced their team awards in a ceremony prior to the start of yesterday's Flyers-Rangers game at the Wachovia Center. The awards include the Bobby Clarke Trophy for most valuable player; the Barry Ashbee Trophy for most outstanding defenseman; the Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy for most improved player from the previous season as voted on by their teammates; the Yanick Dupre Memorial Award for the Flyer who best illustrates character, dignity and respect for the sport both on and off the ice; the Gene Hart Memorial Award given to the player who demonstrated the most “Heart” during the season as voted on by members of the Fan Club at their monthly meetings; and the Toyota Cup, based on “Star of the Game” selections.
Bobby Clarke Trophy:
This season’s Bobby Clarke Trophy was awarded to defenseman Chris Pronger as the team’s most valuable player, as selected by a panel of sportscasters and sportswriters. In his first season with the Flyers, Pronger has appeared in all 81 games for the Flyers where he has posted 55 points (10G,45A) and 79 penalty minutes. His 45 assists leads all Flyers, while his 55 points leads the team defense and ranks third overall on the Flyers. Pronger also leads the team in plus/minus rating (+22), blocked shots (187) and average time-on-ice per game (25:53). In his 16th season in the NHL, Pronger appeared in his 1,100th NHL game in the Flyers-Canadiens game on Apr. 2.
The award was presented by club general manager Paul Holmgren and senior vice president Bob Clarke.
Barry Ashbee Trophy:
In addition to the Bobby Clarke Trophy, Pronger was also awarded the Barry Ashbee Trophy as the team’s most outstanding defenseman, as voted by a panel of sportscasters and sportswriters. His 55 points on the season are the most by a Flyers defenseman since Eric Desjardins had 55 points 10 years ago (1999-00). Pronger has also recorded over 27 minutes of ice time in 20 games this season, over 28 minutes 10 times and six times where he has recorded over 30 minutes of ice time in a game, including his game at Carolina on Dec. 26, where he logged 32:46.
The award was presented by Danny Ashbee, Barry’s son.
Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy:
Defenseman Matt Carle has won the Pelle Lindbergh Memorial Trophy as the Flyer who has most improved from the previous season, as voted by his teammates. In his second season with the Flyers, Carle has 34 points (5G,29A) and 16 penalty minutes in 79 games. He also has a plus/minus rating of +19 and averages 23:18 of time-on-ice per game, both of which rank second on the Flyers. In his fifth season in the NHL, Carle appeared in his 300th NHL game on Mar. 23 at Ottawa, and his 100th game as a Flyer on Dec. 23 at Tampa Bay. On Oct. 10 vs. Anaheim, he recorded a new career high for time-on-ice in a game (32:03) and in the Flyers home opener on Oct. 6 vs. Washington, Carle recorded four assists in the second period, marking a new Flyers record for most assists in a period by a defenseman, which also tied the NHL record for most assists in one period by a defenseman.
The award was presented by Flyers captain Mike Richards.
Yanick Dupre Class Guy Memorial Award:
The Philadelphia chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association (PHWA) announced that it has selected Ian Laperriere as this season’s Yanick Dupre Class Guy Memorial Award winner. This award is presented annually to the Flyer who best illustrates character, dignity and respect for the sport both on and off the ice.
The award honors the memory of Yanick Dupre, who died on August 16, 1997 at the age of 24 after a 16-month battle with leukemia. Dupre played parts of three seasons with the Flyers (1991-92, 1994-95 and 1995-96), recording two goals and 16 penalty minutes in 35 games. He was originally drafted by the Flyers in the third round (50th overall) of the 1991 NHL Entry Draft.
Presenting the award to Laperriere was Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Gene Hart Memorial Award:
In addition to the Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, the Philadelphia Flyers Fan Club also selected Laperriere as the winner of the Gene Hart Memorial Award. This award is given to the player who demonstrated the most “Heart” during the season as voted on by members of the Fan Club at their monthly meetings. Presenting the award to Laperriere were Flyers Fan Club members Joe Fisher and lifetime club member Evelyn Gross, along with a check for $1,500 to the charity of Laperriere’s choice.
The award honors the memory of longtime Flyers broadcaster Gene Hart. For 28 years, Flyers broadcaster Gene Hart called the organization’s most thrilling moments, and in the process, helped spawn generations of devoted fans. Hart’s contributions to the sport were recognized with his induction into the Flyers Hall of Fame in 1992 and the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1997.
Toyota Cup Award:
Flyers captain Mike Richards has won this season’s Toyota Cup as the Flyer who accumulated the most points associated with being selected as a “Star of the Game.” Richards was named First Star seven times, Second Star five times and Third Star three times for a total of 53 points. Five points were awarded for being selected First Star, three points were awarded for a Second Star performance and one point was awarded for a Third Star selection.
Presenting Richards with the award was Paul Muller, representing the Tri-State Toyota Dealers. In addition, the Tri-State Toyota Dealers will make a $5,000 donation to the charity of Richards’ choice.
Richards leads the Flyers in points (62) and ranks second in goals (31), which is a new career high and he is tied for third on the team in assists (31). He also leads the Flyers in power-play goals (13) and power-play points (31) and all Flyer forwards in average time on ice per game (20:22).