– The Carolina Hurricanes today announced that Captain Eric Staal
has been voted by his teammates as the winner of the 2011-12 Steve Chiasson Award. It marks the first time that Staal has been awarded the honor, which goes annually to the player that best exemplifies determination and dedication while proving to be an inspiration to his teammates through his performance and approach to the game.
Staal, 27, leads all Carolina skaters this season with 24 goals, 45 assists and 69 points, and ranks 21st among all NHL players in scoring (through games of April 4). The Thunder Bay, Ont., native notched his 250th NHL goal on March 30, making him just the third player to score 250 goals for the Carolina franchise, and the fastest to reach that mark, doing so in his 637th game. Earlier this season, Staal broke the franchise’s all-time assists streak record when he recorded assists in 11 consecutive games (2/10-3/6: 6g, 14a), and his 12-game points streak (2/8-3/6: 7g, 14a) set a new Hurricanes record since the team’s relocation. He established a new franchise record with his 12th career shorthanded goal on Feb. 20, and became the team’s all-time assists leader since relocation with his 300th career helper on Jan. 12. Staal has scored 250 goals and earned 323 assists (573 points) in 640 NHL regular-season games since being drafted by the Hurricanes’ with the second overall pick in 2003.
Past winners of the Steve Chiasson Award include Ron Francis, Sean Hill, Kevyn Adams, Bret Hedican, Tim Gleason
and Rod Brind’Amour, who won the award five times.
This marked the second end-of-season honor for Staal who, earlier on Thursday, was named the Hurricanes’ Most Valuable Player by the Carolina chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association (PHWA). The Carolina PHWA also named Carolina defenseman Jay Harrison
as the winner of the newly-renamed Josef Vasicek Award for cooperation with the local media.