Each season in the National Hockey League, the player who best exemplifies perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to the sport of hockey is awarded the Bill Masterton Trophy. Clayton Stoner
embodies those traits both on and off the ice, and was nominated for the award by the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association.
The award is named after the former North Star, Bill Masterton, who died during a game against Oakland in 1968.
Stoner spent nearly five years in the minors before earning a spot full-time spot with the Wild last season, appearing in 57 games. This season, the 27-year-old defenseman has overcome a number of injuries, but has been a solid cog in Minnesota’s lineup when healthy. He has appeared in 47 games and has three assists and a plus-3.
Stoner also went through a tumultuous off-season after the loss of his older brother.
Stoner is a physical presence on the blue line and his willingness to stick up for teammates has made him a popular player with both fans and teammates.
Past Masterton Trophy winners include NHL luminaries Steve Yzerman, Cam Neely and Mario Lemieux. Stoner would be the first Wild player to win the award.