RALEIGH — Goalie James Reimer has been selected by the Carolina chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association as the Hurricanes’ nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, which honors perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.
After coming to Carolina in a trade with Florida that helped the team shed Scott Darling’s contract, the 32-year-old Reimer overcame a crowded goaltending situation and went 14-6-2 with a 2.66 goals-against average and .914 save percentage in 25 appearances in his first season with the Hurricanes.
It marks the second straight year that a first-year Hurricanes goalie was selected as the team’s nominee for the award. Curtis McElhinney was last year’s nominee. Reimer is the fifth goalie nominated by Carolina since the franchise moved to North Carolina in 1997, joining McElhinney, Dan Ellis, Kevin Weekes and Arturs Irbe.
Three Hurricanes have been named finalists for the award. Forwards Derek Ryan and Jordan Staal were finalists in consecutive years in 2017 and 2018, and Ron Francis was a finalist in 2002. Current Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour was nominated by the PHWA Carolina chapter three times (2004, 2009, 2010). NHL ironman Doug Jarvis is the franchise’s lone Masterton winner, earning the award in 1987 with the Hartford Whalers.
The Hurricanes are Reimer’s fourth team in 10 NHL seasons. A fourth-round pick by the Maple Leafs in 2006 out of the WHL’s Red Deer Rebels, Reimer played six seasons in Toronto and appeared in at least 32 games in each campaign before he was traded to San Jose at the 2016 trade deadline.
Reimer then signed a five-year contract to be the heir apparent to Roberto Luongo in Florida, but the Panthers instead traded the Manitoba native to the Hurricanes in exchange for Darling and a 2020 sixth-round draft pick and signed Sergei Bobrovsky to a seven-year, $70 million contract. Reimer has one year remaining on his contract that will pay him $3.1 million and cost $3.4 million against the salary cap.
Reimer has split the net this season with Petr Mrazek, who started 38 games to Reimer’s 24 before the season was paused due to the coronavirus pandemic.