The National Hockey League announced today that New York Islanders captain Doug Weight is the winner of the 2011 King Clancy Memorial Trophy. The award is given annually to the player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and who has made a significant humanitarian contribution to his community. Weight was presented with the trophy at the NHL Awards Show in Las Vegas, NV.
Weight was limited to 18 games in his 19th and final NHL season, but the Detroit, MI, native’s on-ice leadership remained strong. While rehabilitating a season-ending back injury, Weight remained an everyday presence with the Islanders, taking on a coaching roll with his teammates during practices and maintaining his leadership roll as captain in the locker room. Late in the season, when he was officially shut down for the year, Weight stepped behind the bench to serve as an assistant coach for the final games of 2010-11.
Weight’s responsibility and leadership in the community this season was as strong as it was in the Islanders locker room. His first charitable venture of the season was a live auction for the Islanders Children’s Foundation in September, in which he served as MC and host. Then, the week before the season opener, Weight brought together the entire team for the Isles’ annual Children’s Foundation Day at Adventureland, a Long Island amusement park, where fans had the chance to interact with the players.
The team captain led the way again in November during the annual Islanders School Day event. Before the team fanned out to schools across Long Island for educational assemblies, he gathered the players for instruction on their presentations.
During the holiday season, Weight brought together more than half of the team for a shopping trip to purchase gifts for local children in need. He then led the charge at local hospitals to hand-deliver the presents.
At the start of the new year, Charles Wang’s Lighthouse International Tournament brought youth hockey players from China, Finland and Japan to Nassau Coliseum. Weight again stepped to the forefront to serve as an ambassador for the Islanders and the NHL. He made appearances on Good Morning America, NHL Live and MSG game broadcasts to promote the international tournament and the sport to national audiences. He also attended tournament games to support the local and international teams participating.
Weight’s overlying effort this past season was geared towards the league-wide Hockey for Huggies campaign. Weight and his wife, Allison, recorded public service announcements that aired on Islanders television broadcasts and in the arena during home games. He also kick-started the program by collecting donations from his teammates.