"Lappy" is Masterton nominee By Terry Frei
The Denver Post Posted: 04/03/2009 06:44:08 AM MDT Updated: 04/03/2009 06:56:44 AM MDT
Avalanche veteran forward Ian Laperriere has been named the Colorado nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, the NHL announced this morning.
The trophy, named for the former University of Denver player who died from a head injury suffered while playing for the NHL's Minnesota North Stars, goes to the player judged to exemplify perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey. The Colorado chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association selected Laperriere as the local winner and nominee.
Laperriere, 35, broke into the NHL with the St. Louis Blues in 1993-94 and has been considered a hard-working, dues-paying, "team" player. His off-ice community activism goes back a long way, as evidenced by the fact that he was the Kings' nominee for the Masterton and the King Clancy Award in 2003. He was also the Kings' Community Service award winner for 2003-04.
Since joining the Avalanche prior to the 2005-06 season, Laperriere has been one of the most active members of the team in the Denver community. He was the Avalanche's 2007 recipient of the Chopper Travaglini Award for community service. Laperriere has been a big supporter of The Children's Hospital in Denver, lending his time and efforts to not only the hospital itself but also to individual patients.
Laperriere also is actively involved in helping the Ronald McDonald House, and has lent his time to Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and has made numerous appearances at youth hockey practices and functions, and has supported Colorado Special Hockey for mentally and physically challenged individuals. He also was one of four men honored by the American Diabetes Association and the Denver Father's Day Council as a "Father of the Year" in 2008.
There'll be huge voids in the leadership and heart departments if the Avs don't re-sign this guy. It'll be a freakin' shame.