From one Rangers captain to another: Jacob Trouba earns NHL's Mark Messier Leadership Award

New York Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba reacts after scoring a goal against the Carolina Hurricanes in the second period during Game 5 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup second-round playoff series, Monday, May 13, 2024, in New York. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)

NEW YORK (AP) — From one former New York Rangers to a current one, Jacob Trouba was selected as the winner of the Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award, the league announced on Tuesday.

The award winner is selected personally by Messier and presented since 2007 to a player who “exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice, during the regular season and who plays a leading role in his community growing the game of hockey.”

Trouba is the first Rangers’ player to earn the honor after helping lead his team to a franchise-best 55 wins and a Presidents’ Trophy for leading the NHL with 114 points. The Rangers hold a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven second-round playoff series against Carolina, with Game 6 at the Hurricanes on Thursday.

On the ice, the second-year captain ranked fourth on the team with a little more than 21 minutes of ice time per game in a two-way role in which Trouba had three goals and 22 points in 69 games, while also playing a key role on the penalty-killing unit. He finished 12th in the league and second on the team in being credited with 183 blocked shots.

Off the ice, the 30-year-old from Michigan has been a staple in promoting the sport by taking part in the Rangers annual weeklong hockey camp for boys and girls. As a budding artist, Trouba also sold prints of his original work to help raise money for the Garden of Dreams Foundation and the city’s Epilepsy Foundation.

He and his wife Kelly, who has epilepsy, founded the Trouba Creative Expressions Art Program to help connect adults with epilepsy and seizures with art therapist. The couple also took part in promoting the NHL and NHL Players’ Association’s Hockey Fights Cancer initiative to encourage people to get regular screenings.


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