The New York Rangers announced their team award winners for the 2016-17 season today. Ryan McDonagh has been named the Rangers' Most Valuable Player and Jesper Fast has been selected as the recipient of the Players' Player Award.
McDonagh was selected as the team's MVP for the second time in his career. The Rangers captain, who became the 10th defenseman in franchise history to receive the award when he was named the Rangers' MVP in 2013-14, is now one of three Blueshirts defensemen who have been named the team's MVP at least twice, along with Brian Leetch (six times) and Barry Beck (twice). The award was voted on by members of the New York Rangers media and has been given annually since the conclusion of the 1941-42 season.
McDonagh has skated in 76 games this season, registering five goals and 35 assists for 40 points, along with a plus-19 rating and 37 penalty minutes. He has established career-highs in assists and primary assists (21) in 2016-17. McDonagh posted a career-high, eight-game assist/point streak from Oct. 17 vs. San Jose to Nov. 1 vs. St. Louis, and his eight-game assist streak was the longest any NHL defenseman recorded this season. In addition, his eight-game point streak was tied for the longest any NHL defenseman registered this season. McDonagh also represented the Rangers at the 2017 NHL All-Star Game in Los Angeles on Jan. 29.
Fast was selected as the recipient of the Players' Player Award for the second consecutive season, becoming the 11th Ranger in franchise history to win the award in at least two consecutive seasons. Among the players who have won the award in back-to-back seasons are Jean Ratelle, John Davidson, Adam Graves, and Brian Leetch. The Players' Player Award has been given annually since the conclusion of the 1958-59 season and recognizes the Ranger who, as selected by his teammates, "best exemplifies what it means to be a team player."
The 25-year-old has registered six goals and 15 assists for 21 points, along with a plus-six rating and 16 penalty minutes in 68 games this season. Fast has posted a plus/minus rating of even or better in 53 of the 68 games he has played this season, including a plus-one rating or better in 20 contests. He ranks third among Rangers forwards in hits (99) and ranks fourth among team forwards in blocked shots (44) in 2016-17.