Hurricanes Derek Ryan named a Masterton Trophy finalist

"Dedication to hockey" honor will be given at June 21 NHL Awards

Eamon Queeney—The North State Journal
Hurricanes center Derek Ryan celebrates Carolina left wing Jeff Skinner's goal in the second period of Carolina's 5-3 win overColumbus on Jan. 10 at PNC Arena.

RALEIGH — Derek Ryan, who became a full-time NHLer this season with the Carolina Hurricanes just before his 30th birthday, was named one of this season’s three finalists for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy to be awarded June 21 in Las Vegas.The Masterton Trophy is given to the player who best exemplifies perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey. Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson, who returned to play this season after his wife was diagnosed with and underwent treatment for throat cancer, and Anaheim forward Andrew Cogliano, a four-time Masterton nominee who is the league’s current ironman with 786 consecutive games played, are the other two finalists.Ryan, a native of Spokane, Wash., played Canadian junior hockey with the Spokane Chiefs and was coached by Bill Peters in his final two Western Hockey League season, signed a two-way contract with the Hurricanes prior to the 2015-16 season. He made his NHL debut March 1, 2016, and played six games with Carolina in his first professional season in North America. He played the rest of the campaign with the AHL’s Charlotte Checkers, serving as the team’s captain.Ryan re-signed with Carolina last offseason, and earned his second NHL promotion on Nov. 11, 2016, and stayed with the Hurricanes the rest of the season. Ryan finished with 11 goals and 18 assists in 67 games with Carolina, averaging 14:53 minutes.”Thanks to @ThePHWA for voting me as a masterton trophy finalist. What a journey it has been! I can’t wait to see what God has in store next,” Ryan said in a tweet.Ryan played Canadian university hockey for four seasons before heading overseas to play professionally. He spent three seasons playing in Austria, then spent the 2014-15 season in the Swedish Hockey League (SHL) with Orebro HK. Ryan led the SHL in scoring that season and was named the league’s MVP, then signed with the Hurricanes that summer.”Derek is a skilled, playmaking center,” said general manager Ron Francis after the signing. “He’s taken a bit of an unconventional path, but has earned a chance to play professionally in North America after having success at every level in Europe. We’re excited that he chose our organization.”