LAS VEGAS -- After picking up two leadership trophies at the 2017 NHL Humanitarian Awards on Tuesday, forward Nick Foligno of the Columbus Blue Jackets deflected the attention to his wife.
"Thank you for being the best example because you gave me a child, three now," Foligno said. "I think you don't really understand what it is to become a leader until you've become a dad or a parent."
Foligno received the King Clancy Trophy and Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award at the Encore at Wynn Las Vegas.
[RELATED: Complete NHL Awards coverage]
"I lost on the slots and the card tables, but I'm winning everything in here," Foligno said, smiling.
Foligno and his wife, Janelle, donated $500,000 to Children's Hospital in Boston in November as a symbol of their gratitude for the life-saving heart surgery their newborn daughter, Milana, received at the hospital in November 2013. A donation of $500,000 was also made on behalf of Milana to Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus.
"This is a tremendous honor for my wife and I," Foligno said. "I obviously wouldn't be here without her. She's been a big supporter of me on and off the ice. We do this together."
The Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award is given annually to the player who exemplifies great leadership qualities to the team, on and off the ice, during the regular season.
Video: NHL Humanitarian Awards honor community, generosity
Messier solicited suggestions from team and League personnel and fans, but the former Edmonton Oilers, New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks captain made the final selection of the three finalists and the winner. The other finalists were defenseman Mark Giordano of the Calgary Flames and center Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks.
"Having the award in my name is very humbling and it comes with a great responsibility that I don't take lightly," Messier said. "It has also kept me very close to the game."
The King Clancy Memorial Trophy is an annual award given to the player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy humanitarian contribution in his community.
Foligno, 29, was named the sixth Blue Jackets captain on May 20, 2015. He had 51 points (26 goals, 25 assists) in 79 games this season to help Columbus qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the second time in the past eight seasons. It was the second-highest point total in his 10-season NHL career; he had 73 points (31 goals, 42 assists) in 2014-15.
"I think I've really embraced what it is to be a Columbus Blue Jacket," Foligno said. "I know we're on to something pretty special."