Devils Hand Out End-of-Season Awards
The New Jersey Devils gathered and voted to choose winners for their in-house team awards. It came as no surprise to me who took home the Devils’ own MVP award.
Jaromir Jagr was voted team MVP by his Devils teammates for the wonderful season that the 42-year-old had. All he did was supply 24 goals and 43 assists for a total of 67 points to a team that lacked a major offensive punch after Ilya Kovalchuk spurned New Jersey for Russia in the offseason. Jagr was far and away the team’s leading point getter; the next closest was Patrik Elias, who finished with 53. Jagr was also the team leader in assists, finishing with eight more than Elias. The only player to tally more goals than Jagr was 24-year-old Adam Henrique, who finished with 25 — only one more than Jagr.
The Devils, who treat their season ticket holders very well, made the announcements for the winners of the awards in front of a crowd of season ticket holders. Jagr, with a great sense of humor, gave a nice celebratory speech, saying, “All the players voted today, this morning, so obviously it cost me a lot of money – I have nothing left. I really appreciate it, guys. Everyone who voted for me, it was a great decision. Those who didn’t vote for me, make a better decision next time.”
Jagr earned the MVP award mostly because of his play on the ice, helping the Devils keep up an unlikely playoff run, but his veteran leadership and locker room presence really gave all the players on the team someone to rally around. Plus, he didn’t miss a single game all season, while also playing during the entire Olympics, marking him as an iron man on skates. It would certainly behoove the Devils to welcome him back with open arms next year!
Other awards handed out included “Unsung Hero,” which was given to Andy Greene, and Ryan Carter took home the “Player’s Player” prize.