Phil Kessel Nominated for Masterton Trophy
Today local chapters of the Professional Hockey Writers Association are announcing nominees for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, and the Vegas chapter has nominated Phil Kessel.
Kessel is being nominated most likely under the category of dedication to hockey, as he became the NHL's ironman this year for most consecutive games played.
In 2007, Kessel won the award after returning to hockey after being diagnosed and treated for testicular cancer. He missed 11 games that season after undergoing surgery and recovery, and he's not missed a game since.
Kessel has appeared in 80 games thus far for the Golden Knights and is averaging a career low 12:49 a game, but has put up a respectable line of 14 goals and 22 assists for 36 points. No one can question his dedication to hockey, and he's simple a "nice guy,(who) tries hard, (and) loves the game."
Kessel is a deserving nominee for this award, although he's likely not going to become a two-time winner given some of the other players who were nominated for persevering in more significant ways.
In any case though, kudos to Kessel for what he's accomplished in his career, and continuing to being a fixture in an NHL lineup 17 years and 1,284 regular season games into his career.