OJHL Unveils Seven New Awards

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OJHL Unveils Seven New Awards

The Ontario Junior Hockey League (OJHL) announced today that it has unveiled seven new end of year awards, including the first-ever Fan Favourite Award that will see fans choose their favourite OJHL star. This brings the total number of year-end league awards handed out to sixteen. As well, the OJHL announced the formation of an 11 person Awards Committee that will be responsible for voting on each of the award winner. The new awards include:

• OJHL Fan Favourite Award
• OJHL Volunteer-of-the-Year
• OJHL Humanitarian-of-the-Year
• OJHL Trainer-of-the-Year
• OJHL Scholastic Player-of-the-Year
• OJHL Executive-of-the-Year
• OJHL Top Prospect Award

The most anticipated of the new awards is the Fan Favourite Award, which is to be voted upon and selected by you, the fans. All fans will be allowed to submit players names in an online form found on the homepage of the OJHL website, www.ojhl.ca. The winner will be the player that receives the most submissions (votes) through the course of the online voting.

Voting begins today (January 25, 2012) and will run throughout the playoffs, ending at 5pm EST on Sunday, March 25, 2012. The winner of the first-ever Fan Favourite Award will be unveiled prior to game one of the OJHL Championship Series during the 2nd Annual OJHL Awards Ceremony.

More importantly, the award will be presented to the winning player by a fan. Teams will be asked to nominate one important fan to their club (using their own criteria) and then one lucky OJHL fan will be randomly selected from that group to present the award on-ice prior to game one of the OJHL Championship.

Criteria for the other new OJHL Awards is as follows:

The Volunteer-of-the-Year will be awarded to the person who has volunteered for the team that is adjudged to have consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty for his or her member club throughout the course of the regular season. Past experience and longevity will also be considered when selecting the winner.

The Humanitarian-of-the-Year will be awarded to the player adjudged to have made the most notable contribution to his community in a humanitarian sense, including, but not limited to, charitable work, school visits and extra-curricular off-ice activities.

The Trainer-of-the-Year will awarded to the trainer, therapist or equipment manager that is adjudged to be the best at his profession for his or her member club throughout the course of the regular season. Past experience and longevity will also be considered when selecting the winner.

The Scholastic Player-of-the-Year will be awarded to the player adjudged to best combine success on the ice with his club, along with success in school.

The Executive-of-the-Year will be awarded to a club executive, including, but not limited to, President, Vice-President, General Manager, Assistant General Manager or Marketing Executive, that is adjudged to have exceeded expectations in his role with the club throughout the course of the regular season.

The Top Prospect Award will be awarded to the player adjudged to be the best eligible prospect for the upcoming NHL Entry Draft.

OJHL Awards that remain in competition include:

• Most Valuable Player
• Top Defenceman
• Rookie-of-the-Year
• Most Gentlemanly Player
• Most Improved Player
• Coach-of-the-Year
• Top Scorer
• Top Goaltender
• Playoff MVP
• 1st & 2nd OJHL All-Star Teams
• 1st & 2nd OJHL All-Prospect Teams

Along with the seven new awards, the OJHL announced a new voting procedure that sees the formation of an 11 person Awards Committee. Following the nominations from across the league, the committee will be assigned the task of voting for the league award winners. Breakdown of the committee is as follows:

• OJHL Staff Member
• OJHL Board of Governor – North-West Conference representative
• OJHL Board of Governor – South-East Conference representative
• OJHL General Manager – East Division representative
• OJHL General Manager – North Division representative
• OJHL General Manager – South Division representative
• OJHL General Manager – West Division representative
• OJHL Media Member – East Division representative
• OJHL Media Member – North Division representative
• OJHL Media Member – South Division representative
• OJHL Media Member – West Division representative

“The OJHL is excited to unveil this list of new awards and especially the Fan Favourite Award as it allows an important segment of our game, the fan’s, to voice their opinion on who they feel the league’s best player might be. By creating seven new league awards, the Board of Governors have taken another step toward the league’s mandate to promote our most integral resource, the players,” said OJHL Commissioner Marty Savoy. Savoy continued by saying, “The formation of an Awards Committee that includes both league, club and media members, allows us to take another step toward complete transparency in the award selection process.”

“As Governors of the OJHL, we wanted to ensure that we recognized the significant contributions of not only our players, but also the staff and volunteers of our teams,” stated OJHL Chairman and Whitby Fury Governor Scott McCrory. “The OJHL made a strategic decision to ensure that we promote the efforts and accomplishments of our players and we have had tremendous support from our media partners in each of the communities that we are located. We feel that the addition of media members in our year-end award process allows for another knowledgeable and impartial group to ensure that the very best of our nominees are awarded for their successes.

The OJHL Awards will be unveiled throughout the course of the playoffs with the first awards, Top Scorer and Top Goaltender announced immediately following the completion of the regular season based on statistics.

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