Chelios a Masterton finalist
The award is a tough one to get a handle on. It's presented annually to the player "who best exemplifies the qualities of perserverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey." Perserverance is translated by hockey writers (like myself) to mean medical condition. It's a tough award to vote on because how do you measure dedication and perserverance?
The award works like this ... it's the only one with nominees. Each chapter (city) of professional hockey writers gets together an nominates one player from the team they cover. Then the entire PHWA membership votes on the 30 nominees.
Chelios certainly seems to fit the bill for dedication to hockey. How writers in other cities compare that to the medical ailments of Pisani and Blake, however, is unknown. (Or will be until the winner is announced June 12.
I think that Chelios becoming the second oldest player ever in the NHL gives writers something to hang their vote on , rather than just that Chelios is really old. I wouldn't be surprised to see him win this, especially with Blake having a reputation of being prickly.