The Calgary chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association today announced that defenseman Kris Russell has been named the team’s nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.
The award is chosen by the PHWA from the 30 team nominees nominated by each chapter.
The Flames had no shortage of strong representatives – Lance Bouma, Michael Ferland and Matt Stajan among them, and a case can be made for the resurgent Dennis Wideman, as well.
Russell himself is a pretty strong nominee. He’s the shot-blockingest man in recorded NHL history, just one shy of the record, and you can connect Wideman’s resurgence to his pairing with Russell. Since Wideman was partnered with Calgary’s alternate captain, he’s been able to jump into the play and get involved with the rush much more readily. It helps that Russell’s a hustler, and always manages to get back and deal with the opposition.
Not bad for a player that couldn’t find a home in Columbus or St. Louis, eh?
I would’ve rather seen Bouma nominated, personally, but Kris Russell is a strong representative.