Dominic Moore Wins 2013-14 Masterton Trophy
The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the NHL player who best exemplifies "the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey." Hearing that description, it came as no surprise that Rangers center Dominic Moore was named the winner of the 2014 Masterton Trophy Tuesday night at the NHL Awards Show in Las Vegas.
"I really appreciate, and am very grateful for, this award," Moore told the assembled audience. "It's an award I have a ton of respect for. Perseverance is something I've tried to bring to my life throughout my life; and perseverance is also not something that doesn't happen on your own, it's a team thing."
After spending a year and a half away from the game, first caring for his ill wife then mourning her untimely passing, Moore resumed his professional hockey career this past season. The popular 33 year-old signed with the Rangers as a free agent, rejoining the team that had first drafted him back in 2000, and proceeded to play with the passion all had come accustomed to throughout Moore's eight-year National Hockey League career.
"I have had a lot of good examples of perseverance over the years, and none more so than my wife, Katie, and so this award is very meaningful," added Moore, who was presented his trophy by Dallas Stars forward Rich Peverley, who collapsed on his team's bench in early March and is currently working his way back from that frightening health scare.
Moore played in 73 games in 2013-14, and he scored six goals while totaling 18 points. He was an integral member of the team's third-ranked penalty killing unit, won 54.6 percent of his faceoffs, and anchored the Rangers' fourth line, which was a key part of the club's second-half success.
During the playoffs Moore scored three goals and added five assists for eight points. He scored the only goal in the Rangers' 1-0 victory over the Canadiens in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Final which vaulted New York into its first Stanley Cup Final appearance in twenty years. It was also Moore's first-ever appearance in the Cup Final.
Throughout the season teammates often called Moore "an inspiration" for his consistently committed play on the ice, and how he has managed his life following the death of his wife, Katie. Along with resuming his hockey career, Moore has been raising funds for--and managing--the Katie Moore Foundation. His story has been told many times in the local and national media, most notably in a moving piece which aired on ESPN.
Moore is the fifth Ranger to even win the Masterton Trophy, and the first since Adam Graves did so following the 2000-01 season. Jean Ratelle (1970-71), Rod Gilbert (1975-76), and Anders Hedberg (1984-85) also won the Masterton while playing for the Rangers.
The runners-up to Moore were Jaromir Jagr of the New Jersey Devils and Manny Malhotra of the Carolina Hurricanes, a pair of ex-Rangers.
Moore's Ranger teammate, Martin St. Louis, finished second to Colorado's Ryan O'Reilly in the voting for the Lady Byng Trophy, which is awarded annually to the NHL's "most gentlemanly player".