NHL awards 2019: Three finalists named for Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy

Blue Jackets left winger Nick Foligno, Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner and Sharks center Joe Thornton are the three finalists for the 2019 Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.

The award, named in honor of the late Bill Masterton, a North Stars player who died in 1968 as the result of injuries suffered in a game, is given annually “to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.”

The Professional Hockey Writers Association votes on the award. The winner will be announced June 19 during the 2019 NHL Awards show.

Foligno, Lehner and Thornton have all overcome either personal, family or injury problems in the past year to find success on the ice. Foligno, the Blue Jackets captain, helped lead the team to the Stanley Cup playoffs while also dealing with health issues affecting two of his children.

Lehner made headlines before last season when he admitted to battling addiction and mental health issues. He then went on to post his best NHL season (25-13-5 record, 2.13 goals against average, .930 save percentage, six shutouts).

The 39-year-old Thornton, who battled knee injuries in 2017 and 2018, rebounded this season to score 51 points (16 goals, 35 assists) in 73 games, helping the Sharks make the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The NHL will continue rolling out all of its award finalists every night over the next nine days culminating with the Hart Trophy nominees on April 28.

Here is the schedule for all of the announcements, along with previously announced finalists.

NHL awards finalists announcement dates

  • April 17: Selke Trophy (Patrice Bergeron, Ryan O’Reilly, Mark Stone)
  • April 18: Lady Byng Trophy (Ryan O’Reilly, Aleksander Barkov, Sean Monahan)
  • April 19: Masterton Trophy (Nick Foligno, Robin Lehner, Joe Thornton)
  • April 20: Vezina Trophy (Top goaltender)
  • April 21: Norris Trophy (Top defenseman)
  • April 22: Mark Messier Leadership Award
  • April 23: King Clancy Memorial Trophy (Humanitarian Award)
  • April 24: Willie O’Ree Community Hero Award
  • April 25: Ted Lindsay Award (Most Outstanding Player as voted by the players)
  • April 26: Jack Adams Award (Top head coach)
  • April 27: Calder Trophy (Top rookie)
  • April 28: Hart Trophy (Most Valuable player to his team)