04/22/2014 9:55 AM
Portland, ME – The Portland Pirates, AHL affiliate of the Phoenix Coyotes, today announced the winners of the 2013-14 Team Awards, presented by Creative Awards.
Partner of the Year: Electricity Maine
The Partner of the Year award is given to the sponsor that has shown exemplary commitment and dedication to the Pirates organization, going above and beyond their obligations to the team. Electricity Maine is this year’s recipient. As part of their participation in the Pirates inaugural “Goals for Good” program, Electricity Maine has donated $2200 this year to benefit "New Beginnings", a local charity dedicated to helping homeless youth and their families. Electricity Maine showed dedication above and beyond their obligations to the community, fans, and Pirates hockey organization during the 2013-14 season
Tom Ebright Award: Jordan Szwarz
The Tom Ebright award is given each year to the Pirates player who best exemplifies what it means to be a Portland Pirate, as envisioned by team founder Tom Ebright. The award is given to a player who plays for the love of the game. Pirates captain Jordan Szwarz is the recipient of the Ebright award for the second straight year. After starting the year with the Pirates, he earned his first career NHL call up to the Phoenix Coyotes, tallying his first career NHL goal. Szwarz joins former Pirates captain Trent Whitfield as the only other two time winner of the Ebright award.
Jack Button Memorial Award: Connor Murphy
The Jack Button Award is named after the late Jack Button, former Washington Capitals Director of Player Personnel, and is given to the organization’s top prospect, as selected by the Phoenix Coyotes. This year’s recipient, Connor Murphy had a breakout rookie season with both the Pirates and the Phoenix Coyotes. After starting his professional career with the Pirates, Murphy earned his first call-up to the coyotes on November 15th, where he scored his first professional goal in his first NHL game. A native of Dublin, Ohio, Murphy has tallied 13 assists in 36 games with the Pirates to go with 1 goal and 7 assists for the Coyotes. Murphy joins Buffalo Sabres’ goaltender Jhonas Enroth, Coyotes defenseman Michael Stone, and Washington Capitals forward Chris Brown, who won the Button award last year, as a recipient of this award.
Player’s Player: Brett Hextall
The Pirates’ Players Player Award is presented to the player who is selected by their teammates as a representative member of the team’s character and values. Only 4 Pirates during the team’s 21 year history have won the Player’s Player Award multiple times, including Pirates Hall of Famers Jeff Nelson and Kent Hulst. Brett Hextall joins them after achieving career highs in goals, assists and points this season, tallying 11 goals, and 12 assists for 23 points. Hextall joins Tyler Bouck and Pirates fan favorite Mel Angelstad as the only winners of the player’s player award in consecutive years.
Unsung Hero: Jordan Martinook
The Pirates’ Unsung Hero is chosen from a fan vote and is given to the player who surpassed expectations to become a key member of the team. Jordan Martinook was voted Unsung Hero for the Pirates this season after setting career highs in all offensive categories, tallying 14 goals and 16 assists in 67 games played. Martinook also served as a color commentator on a Pirates broadcast with Jeff Mannix while he recovering from injury. He joins teammate Tim Kennedy as a past recipient of this award.
Most Popular Player: Andy Miele
The Pirates’ Most Popular Player is determined by a fan vote and has been awarded to Pirates’ legends Jason Christie, Hall of Famer Kevin Kaminski, and Mark Major in the past. This year’s recipient, for the second straight year, is Andy Miele. Miele, a third year pro from Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan, was the 2011-12 recipient of the team’s Most Valuable Player Award after spending 4 years at Miami (OH) University, winning the Hobey Baker Award as the nation’s top hockey player. Miele joins Jason Christie as the only other multiple winner of the fan favorite award.
Most Valuable Player: Andy Miele
The Pirates’ Most Valuable Player is determined by a fan vote and is given to the Pirates player who is seen as the Most Valuable to the team. This year’s recipient, Andy Miele, had a breakout season, setting career highs in goals, assists and points. The third year veteran tallied 27 goals and 45 assists for 72 points, all while moving up in the Pirates record book to 11th in career goals with 62, 9th in career assists with 117, and 9th in career points with 179. He also played 7 games for the Phoenix Coyotes this season, tallying his first 2 NHL points. Miele was named to the American Hockey League all-star second team this season, after he ranked 3rd in the AHL in overall scoring. Miele was named Pirates MVP during his rookie season of 2011-12 and joins Mark Mancari as a multiple time MVP with the team. The Most Valuable Player award has also been won by Pirates Hall of Famers Jeff Nelson, Jim Carey, and Martin Brochu.
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