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NY Islanders Captain Named Finalist for Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award

John Tavares (Islanders.NHL.ccom)

John Tavares (Islanders.NHL.ccom)


New York Islanders captain, John Tavares was named as one of the finalists for the Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award on Wednesday.

Tavares joins Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and Shea Weber from the Nashville Predators as the three players receiving the most votes. The award is presented to the player that best displays leadership qualities to the team both on and off the ice.

Messier solicits suggestions for the award from league and team personnel, as well as from fans. The former Edmonton Oiler, New York Rangers and Vancouver Canuks captain, then makes his decision on which players are most deserving of the award.

The three leaders will find out which one of them will take the hardware home at the 2016 NHL Awards on June 22, at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Tavares has served as the Islanders captain since 2013. During the 2015-2016 season, he helped lead the team to a 100-point season, for the second straight year.

He continued his teammates program, which has provided season tickets and VIP experiences to sick and underprivileged children for the last five seasons. Tavares has spent nearly 32,000 to help create these special experiences.

Tavares also helped spearhead the Islanders’ fundraising for their Military Appreciation Night in November. He did so by offering 5,000 dollars to help the team host over 300 active and retired service members at the game.

Ovechkin has been the Capitals captain since 2010. This past season he put up his seventh 50 goal season, helping to lead the Caps to a franchise record of 56 wins and 120 points. The Capitals won the President’s Trophy as the top overall team during the regular season.

Ovechkin expanded his relationship with the American Special Hockey Association, as he hosted nearly 60 children and adolescents during a unique skating session in October. As an official spokesperson for ASHA, Ovechkin received Washingtonian Magazine’s, Washingtonian of the Year for his work with special needs children.

He also continued his Ovi’s Crazy Eights program, which has provided season tickets Most Valuable Kids and ASHA for the last 10 years.

Weber, the Predators captain since 2010, for the third time in his career scored at least 20 goals and 50 points. He helped lead the Predators to the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the second straight season.

Weber is a leader with several charities in the Nashville area, as well as his hometown of Sicamous, British Columbia. Weber, along with teammate and goaltender Pekka Rinne, created the 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund.

The 365 Pediatric Cancer Fund raises money and donates tickets to patients at the Monroe Carell, Jr Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. The initiative has donated over 700,000 dollars since its inception in 2013.

Weber also partners with the Sicamous Shootout in hosting a golf tournament to support the British Columbia Cancer Society.

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