Earlier this season, Taylor Fedun was a healthy scratch for the Rochester Americans, a casualty of the Buffalo Sabres having too many veterans on their AHL affiliate’s roster. One trade to the Dallas Stars later, and Fedun is now a regular player for a playoff-bound NHL team.
It’s for these reasons that the Dallas Chapter of the PHWA have nominated Fedun as the Stars’ nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy:
“I had the opportunity to come up here and get some games and really the thought at the time I was filling a hole while guys were injured,” Fedun said. “And then guys slowly started to get healthy again and (Dallas) made a couple trades and I just stuck around. So it went from being a roller coaster to finding some stability the last couple months, when I look back at this year I can’t help but smile with how it’s gone so far.”
The Masterton is awarded annually to the player “who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to.” Nominees tend to be players who are having “bounce-back” seasons, whether it was from injury, poor play, or — in Fedun’s case — irrelevancy:
“Especially with the career I’ve had,” Fedun said. “I like to try and remind myself to not get too comfortable, it allows me to stay focused and perform to the best of my ability by knowing I’m getting an opportunity and need to make the most of it. Not getting too comfortable is important because that’s when you can start to slip.”
You can read more from Sean Shapiro here.
Thanks to last night’s win over the Edmonton Oilers, the Stars’ magic number is just three. Let’s hear what head coach Jim Montgomery had to say about the game:
"I think it's the will inside that locker room of those players wanting to not only make the playoffs, but go in there playing the right way." pic.twitter.com/JirbmsVcbe— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) March 29, 2019
Here’s Jamie Benn, who scored the game-winning shootout goal:
The wins aren't always pretty, but the Stars keep getting results on the road. Benn talks about his shootout goal and tonight's win. pic.twitter.com/0kmAzg1BNZ— Dallas Stars (@DallasStars) March 29, 2019
Another Ben Bishop injury? Never fear, Anton Khudobin is here!
I liked sharing scores from Eastern Conference teams as well last time, so why not do it again?
- The reigning champs clinched a fifth consecutive playoff trip, as the Washington Capitals beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2. [Japers’ Rink]
- The Winnipeg Jets are still favored to win the Central, but failed to pad points thanks to a 5-4 loss to the New York Islanders, who are trying to catch Washington in the Metro. [Lighthouse Hockey]
- Meanwhile in the Central, the Chicago Blackhawks kept their playoff hopes technically alive with a 5-4 win over the San Jose Sharks. [Second City Hockey]
- Finally, in easily the most important game of the night, the Columbus Blue Jackets took control of their own destiny by beating the Montreal Canadiens 6-2. [The Cannon]
As you can see, that victory put Columbus into the second Wild Card spot in the East. With the Philadelphia Flyers all but eliminated and the top three of both divisions all but settled, that leaves us three teams vying for two spots:
Similarly, several teams in the West are all but officially eliminated, and with the Stars more-or-less a playoff lock, that leaves three teams fighting for just one spot:
Around the League
Each team only has one Masterton nominee, but there are a couple former Stars up for the award. Patrick Eaves is the Anaheim Ducks’ nominee this season:
Also from California, former Stars draft pick Jack Campbell is the nominee for the Los Angeles Kings:
(new article) @ThePHWA LA Chapter selects Goaltender Jack Campbell as @LAKings 2018-19 Masterton Trophy Nominee, awarded for perseverance and dedication to hockey.— The Mayor John Hoven (@mayorNHL) March 28, 2019
Our story includes reaction from Bill Ranford, @Dusty70, and Mike Stothers https://t.co/11Aeps8eeH pic.twitter.com/JG1tLse3Pz
More Masterton madness — here’s a look at each team’s nominee and their case:
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl have accomplished a feat no duo has done in almost a decade, and no Oilers duo has done in 30 years:
Here's the list of teammates since 2005-06 to record 100 points in a season pic.twitter.com/kkjp8h3OaD— Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) March 29, 2019
Finally, R.I.P. Storm Surge. Here’s hoping you return for the playoffs...