Calgary, AB – The Western Hockey League announced the 2011-12 winners of the annual WHL Awards presented Wednesday, May 2nd at the WHL Awards Luncheon held in Calgary, Alberta.
WHL Player of the Year, Four Broncos Memorial Trophy
Brendan Shinnimin (Winnipeg, MB), Tri-City Americans
Shinnimin, a Winnipeg, MB, native, enjoyed an excellent season for the Americans, recording 58 goals and 76 assists for 134 points along with a +45 rating in 69 games and capturing the Bob Clarke trophy as the WHL’s top regular-season scorer as the Ams won the U.S. Division and Western Conference regular-season titles. Shinnimin’s 134 points marks the highest point total for a WHL player since the 1998-99 season. The 5’10”, 175-lb pivot finished second among all WHL players with 58 goals and third among WHL players with 76 assists. Additionally, Shinnimin finished second in the WHL with 21 power play markers and second with seven shorthanded tallies. His nine game-winning goals tied him for third among all WHL players, while his +45 rating tied him for the WHL lead in that category. Shinnimin maintained consistent production throughout the season, recording at least one point in 60 of 69 games he played, and enjoyed point streaks of at least 13 games on two different occasions, including ending the regular season on a 23-game point streak. Shinnimin was named the Husky WHL Player of the Month for February after piling up an astounding 23 goals and 43 points in just 14 games.
Emerson Etem (Long Beach, CA), Medicine Hat Tigers
WHL Rookie of the Year, Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy
Sam Reinhart (Vancouver, BC), Kootenay Ice
The youngest of the three Reinhart boys, Sam enjoyed a terrific first season in the WHL with the Kootenay Ice. Playing alongside his oldest brother, Max, the Vancouver, B.C., product scored 28 goals and 34 assists for 62 points in 67 games for the Ice this season, putting him behind only his brother in team scoring. His 28 goals tied for the Ice lead, and were the most by any 16-year-old rookie in the WHL, while his 62 points put him fourth among all WHL rookies in that category. In addition, Reinhart scored five game-winning goals and enjoyed 15 multiple-point outings during the season. Kootenay’s first-round pick, 15th overall, in the 2010 WHL Bantam Draft, Sam played four regular-season games for the Ice last season and got into seven post-season games as the Ice captured the 2011 WHL Championship. Reinhart is eligible for the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.
Tim Bozon (Cureglia, SUI), Kamloops Blazers
WHL Goaltender of the Year, Del Wilson Trophy
Tyler Bunz (St. Albert, AB), Medicine Hat Tigers
Bunz enjoyed his best season in the WHL over his four-year career with the Medicine Hat Tigers, helping the team make the playoffs for a 10th consecutive season. The 20-year-old from St. Albert, AB, appeared in a career-high 61 games for the Tigers, posting a 39-17-5 record with three shutouts to go with a 2.57 goals-against average and a .921 save percentage as the Tigers finished in fourth place in the Eastern Conference. Bunz finished third among all WHL goaltenders in wins, second in save percentage, fifth in GAA, and tied for sixth in shutouts. He was also selected among the 3 Stars in a game 27 times, including 10 1st Star selections. His best month came in February when he posted a perfect 7-0 record with a 1.86 GAA and a .941 save percentage and was named the Vaughn WHL Goaltender of the Month. Bunz was the Tigers’ first-round pick, 21st overall, in the 2007 WHL Bantam Draft, and is an Edmonton Oilers prospect.
Ty Rimmer (Edmonton, AB), Tri-City Americans
WHL Defenceman of the Year, Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy
Alex Petrovic (Edmonton, AB), Red Deer Rebels
Petrovic turned in an outstanding season on the blue line for the Red Deer Rebels, despite the Rebels not making the WHL playoffs. The 21-year-old from Edmonton, AB, finished third on the team and 15th among all WHL defensemen in scoring with 48 points, including a career-high 12 goals, in 68 games this season, and helped hold together a Rebels’ blue line that was decimated by injuries over the course of the season. Named to the WHL Eastern Conference First All-Star team, Petrovic ate up a large amount of minutes for the Rebels, playing in all situations, and often matched up against the opposition’s best line. Petrovic was the Rebels’ second-round pick, 33rd overall, in the 2007 WHL Bantam Draft, and has played 270 regular-season games over five seasons for the team. He is a Florida Panthers prospect.
Brenden Kichton (Spruce Grove, AB), Spokane Chiefs
WHL Most Sportsmanlike Player, Brad Hornung Trophy
Mark Stone (Winnipeg, MB), Brandon Wheat Kings
The WHL’s second-leading scorer this season, Mark Stone is also the WHL Eastern Conference nominee for the Most Sportsmanlike Player award. The 19-year-old from Winnipeg, MB, netted a career-high 41 goals and 82 assists for 123 points this season while drawing just 22 minutes in penalties in 66 games. Stone, a WHL Eastern Conference First Team All-Star, drew minor penalties in just 10 of the 66 games he played and picked up more than one minor infraction in a single game just once all season, despite playing heavy minutes for the Wheat Kings. A gifted and competitive offensive player, Stone is respected for his scoring abilities as well as his on-ice demeanor. A fifth-round pick of the Wheat Kings in the 2007 WHL Bantam Draft, Stone is a prospect of the NHL’s Ottawa Senators.
Ryan Murray (White City, SK), Everett Silvertips
WHL Scholastic Player of the Year, Daryl K. (Doc) Seaman Memorial Trophy
Reid Gow (Killarney, MB), Spokane Chiefs
Reid Gow made an impact on the ice for the Spokane Chiefs, and was a star in the classroom during the 2011-12 school year. The 17-year-old from Killarney, MB, completed the first semester of his Grade 12 year with a 95.3% cumulative average at Joel E. Ferris High School in Spokane, WA, including finishing with a perfect 100% in Sports Marketing. Singled out as a top student under any circumstances by his instructors, Gow’s scholastic achievements have been considered extraordinary considering the time constraints he faces as a WHL player. Gow is also currently enrolled in an online course through Athabasca University, and is also still enrolled at Ferris High School. On the Ice, Gow put up two goals and 20 points in 54 games on the blue line for the Chiefs, helping them make the playoffs for as sixth straight year.
Jimmy Bubnick (Saskatoon, SK), Calgary Hitmen
WHL Coach of the Year, Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy
Jim Hiller, Tri-City Americans
In his third season as head coach of the Tri-City Americans, Jim Hiller guided the Ams to yet another outstanding regular-season campaign. Under Hiller, the Ams posted a 50-18-2-2 record for 104 points to capture their fourth U.S. Division title in five seasons and finish with the best record in the WHL Western Conference. Hiller’s Americans boasted the WHL’s fourth-ranked offense and the top-ranked defense, and scored 91 more goals than they allowed this season. In addition, Hiller’s Americans owned the WHL’s seventh-ranked power play and the top-ranked penalty killing unit. In three seasons as head coach of the Americans, Hiller has piled up a coaching record of 147-64-5-6 for a .678 winning percentage in that time.
Pat Conacher, Regina Pats
WHL Executive of the Year, Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy
Bob Green, Edmonton Oil Kings
Bob Green has been the architect of the Edmonton Oil Kings since they joined the WHL for the 2007-08 WHL season. During the 2011-12 season, Green’s fifth campaign as general manager, the Oil Kings skated to the best record in the WHL with a 50-15-3-4 mark for 107 points, capturing the Scotty Munro Memorial trophy. The Oil Kings’ roster features 16 players who were selected by Green and his staff through the WHL Bantam Draft and another two who were chosen through the CHL Import draft. Eight of the team’s top 10 scorers were drafted by Green. In addition, Green bolstered his roster with key acquisitions such as Tyler Maxwell and Jordan Peddle. Having put together a talented and exciting team, the Oil Kings saw a 24.6% increase in their attendance during the regular season.
Craig Bonner, Kamloops Blazers
WHL Humanitarian of the Year, Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy
Taylor Vause (Calgary, AB), Swift Current Broncos
The captain of the Swift Current Broncos, Taylor Vause was a star on the ice for the Broncos, and devoted countless hours to the town of Swift Current and surrounding communities. The Calgary, AB, product has involved himself in several charity initiatives, spent plenty of time visiting schools, reading to students and promoting the importance of education, and has been recognized as a Youth Leader in the community by the Swift Current and region Drug Task Force. As a young man living with Type 1 diabetes, Taylor has been a vocal spokesperson to help create awareness and raise funds for a cure for the disease. He is a prime example of someone who never let an obstacle get in the way of chasing his dream. Taylor even took the time to design special jerseys to commemorate the Four Broncos, which were worn by the team and auctioned off with proceeds going to the Broncos Education Fund.
Brendan Gallagher (Delta, BC), Vancouver Giants
WHL Marketing / Business Award
Moose Jaw Warriors
The Moose Jaw Warriors, under the management of Director of Business Operations Corey Nyhagen, made great strides in increasing their financial and overall presentation of Warriors Hockey. During the 2011-12 WHL season, the Warriors increased overall club revenues by over $1 Million dollars. Having moved into a new, state-of-the-art facility, Mosaic Place, the Warriors increased their sponsorship revenue by 70%, and increased season ticket revenue by nearly 40%. Thanks to their new building and their increased presence in and support from the Moose Jaw community, the Warriors saw their average attendance increase by the second-largest margin of any WHL team from the previous season. The Warriors also managed successful events such as the Western Canada Under-16 Challenge Cup and the Subway Super Series throughout the 2011-12 season.
WHL Top Official, Allen Paradice Memorial Trophy
Pat Smith (Vancouver, BC)
WHL Regular Season Champions, Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy
Edmonton Oil Kings: GP – 72 W – 50 L – 15 OTL – 3 SL – 4 Pts – 107
WHL Top Scorer – Bob Clarke Trophy
Brendan Shinnimin – (Winnipeg, MB) Tri-City Americans
GP – 69 G – 58 A – 76 Pts – 134 PIM – 82
Shinnimin finished the 2011-12 WHL regular season with a League-leading 134 points on 58 goals and 76 assists. The 21-year-old from Winnipeg, MB, accumulated the most points in a regular season since the 1998-99 campaign, finished 11 points ahead of his nearest competition in the scoring race, and was one of three Americans’ players to top the 100-point plateau. Shinnimin recorded points in 60 of the 69 games he played this season, and finished the season on a 23-game point streak. He was named the Husky WHL Player of the Month for February after piling up a whopping 23 goals and 43 points in just 14 games. Now in his final season in the WHL, Shinnimin finishes his regular-season career with 131 goals and 337 points in 267 career regular-season contests. He recently signed a three-year entry-level contract with the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes.