Zdeno Chara, Kevin Hayes and Carey Price are finalists for the Masterton Trophy.
The winner, voted by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, is awarded annually to the player in the National Hockey League who best exemplifies “perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to ice hockey”.
The winner will be presented at the 2022 NHL Awards, either during the Conference or Stanley Cup finals.
Chara, 45, was the oldest player in the NHL this season, his 24th in his career. He set the record for most played regular season games in his position when he made his 1625th match on February 24. He scored 14 points (2 + 12) and averaged 18:44 minutes per game in 72 games with the New York Islanders. He also served as a mentor to the Islanders Hill Noah Dobson who scored 13 goals and 38 assists during the season.
Chara is a finalist for the first time and may become the fourth player from the New York Islanders to win the prize and first then Robin Lehner won 2018-19. He may be the first hill to win the award since Bryan Berard did so in 2003-04.
Hayes has been sidelined with injuries throughout the season, including two pre-season surgeries and another in January. The Philadelphia Flyers forward dedicated this season to his brother Jimmy, who died on August 23. Hayes scored 31 points (10 + 21) in 48 games, including 22 points (7 + 15) in 28 games after returning to the roster in March. The 30-year-old took a major leadership role after becoming the Flyers team captain Claude Giroux trejdades till Florida Panthers den 19 mars.
Hayes is a finalist for the first time and could become the second Flyers player in a row to win the prize Oskar Lindblom.
Price underwent knee surgery during the off-season and was expected to be out for 10-12 weeks. But the Montreal Canadiens goalkeeper suffered a setback that made him wonder if his playing career was over. He also joined the NHL / NHLPA’s relief program in October.
The 34-year-old goalkeeper made his first appearance of the season on April 15 and played five games. He made 37 saves in the Canadiens’ 10-2 victory over the Florida Panthers in the final regular season round on April 29. Price, also a finalist for the first time, may become the sixth Montreal player to win the prize and first since Max Pacioretty won the 2011-12 season. He could be the first goalkeeper to win since Lehner.