SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Dany Sabourin of the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins has been named the winner of the Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award as the AHL’s outstanding goaltender for the 2005-06 season, as voted by players and members of the media in each of the league’s 27 cities.
A 2005-06 First Team AHL All-Star, Sabourin has anchored the AHL’s top-ranked defense this year, backstopping Wilkes-Barre to its best regular season in franchise history and its first East Division championship. With his record of 28-14-4 in 47 appearances this season, Sabourin ranks first among active goaltenders in goals-against average (2.30), second in save percentage (.921), third in victories (a team-record 28) and tied for fourth in shutouts (three).
Sabourin, who won his first nine starts of the season, represented the Penguins at the 2006 Rbk Hockey AHL All-Star Classic, and was named the Koho/AHL Goaltender of the Month for January.
A native of Val d’Or, Que., the 25-year-old Sabourin was a fourth-round draft pick by Calgary in 1998. He has compiled a career record of 61-50-12 with nine shutouts in 133 AHL games. Sabourin has played five career NHL games, including one this season with Pittsburgh.
The Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award, which was first presented in 1984, honors former Pittsburgh Penguins general manager “Baz” Bastien, who played four seasons in goal with the AHL’s Pittsburgh Hornets (1945-49) before suffering a career-ending eye injury. Bastien would go on to serve as head coach and general manager of the Hornets, leading them to the 1967 Calder Cup championship.
Previous winners of the award include Sam St. Laurent (1986), Mark Laforest (1987, ’91), Felix Potvin (1992), Manny Legace (1996), Jean-Francois Labbe (1997), Martin Biron (1999), Dwayne Roloson (2001), Martin Prusek (2002), Jason LaBarbera (2004) and Ryan Miller (2005).
In operation since 1936, the AHL is celebrating its historic 70th anniversary this season, and continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. Over 80 percent of all NHL players today are AHL graduates, and more than 350 AHL players have been recalled to the NHL this season alone. Sixteen clubs will continue to vie for the league’s coveted championship trophy when the 2006 Calder Cup Playoffs get underway next week.