SenShot’s Mid-Season NHL Awards

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BILL MASTERTON TROPHY – Perseverence and Dedication

EAST: Manny Malhotra, CAR – An eye injury forced him out of the game for a time in Vancouver, but his perseverence led to a comeback and a stint in the AHL on a professional tryout.  He made it back to the NHL in October, and has been a mainstay in the Hurricane’s lineup ever since, and has 4 goals and 4 assists and a +5 rating in 30 games.

Dec 11, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Los Angeles Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell (33) during their game against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Kings beat the Maple Leafs 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

WEST:  Willie Mitchell, LAK – Devastating knee injuries kept him out of the lineup for the entire 2013 season, the Kings blueliner returned to the lineup in 2014 and has played in 38 of the team’s 43 games, playing over 20 minutes per night and registering 4 assists and a +8 rating.

Jan 4, 2014; Uniondale, NY, USA; Carolina Hurricanes center Manny Malhotra (22) controls the puck in front of New York Islanders center Ryan Strome (18) during the first period of a game at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

WINNER:  Malhotra gets the nod, although if Steven Stamkos can return before the Olympics, he might get a lot of consideration for the award in the second half.