It says much for Jordan Eberle that he could be named the WHL's player of the year skating for a Regina Pats team which missed the playoffs.
Eberle, who sort of became a living legend with his nick-of-time goals for Team Canada in the past two world junior championships, was a hands-down pick for the Four Broncos Trophy. He finished in the league scoring race with 106 points in just 57 games (one behind Calgary centre Brandon Kozun), never going more than two games in a row without getting on the scoresheet.
Combine that his world junior scoring feats, which should be factored in (since it's a reward for being an elite player in the league), and Eberle was richly deserving.
Vancouver Giants centre Craig Cunningham, who had a 97-point season, was the runner-up.
Some quick commentary on the Dub's other major award winners:
Goaltender of the year (Del Wilson Trophy): Martin Jones, Calgary Hitmen
Six-foot-four Los Angeles King prospects has posted, dating back from this season,
Defenceman of the year (Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy): Tyson Barrie, Kelowna Rockets
A Colorado draft choice, Barrie was the leading scorer on a Rockets team which includes top 2011 draft prospect Shane McColgan. He is the first Rocket to receive the award.
Scholastic Player Award (Daryl K. "Doc" Seaman Memorial Trophy): Adam Lowry, Swift Current Broncos
Not a surprise, if you consider the hockey aptitude passed on by his father, former NHLer Dave Lowry, probably carries over off the ice. The younger Lowry, who didn't even turn 17 until after the regular season, put up a respectable 34 points as a rookie.
Most Sportsmanlike Award (Brad Hornung Trophy): Jason Bast, Moose Jaw Warriors
A WHL rarity as someone who played five seasons in his hometown, Bart had a 33-goal season while spending just 16 minutes in the penalty box.
Humanitarian of the year (Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy): Matt Fraser, Kootenay Ice
Ice forward took it upon himself to raise more than $14,000 for the East Kootenay Foundation for Health's Starlite campaign. His initial goal with his Shoot For the Star fundraiser was to raise $5,000.
Coach of the year (Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy): Mark Holick, Kootenay Ice
Perhaps a bit of an upset. Holick guided Kootenay to fourth in the Eastern Conference, but runner-up Craig Hartsburg oversaw a 34-point jump with the Everett Silvertips in the Western Conference. Granted, Holick's team held its own in a tough conference.
Executive of the Year (Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy): Kelly McCrimmon, Brandon Wheat Kings
The Wheat Kings have been one of the league's gold standards, thanks to their coach-general manager-owner. They'll have a pretty good chance to show off their organization at the MasterCard Memorial Cup in about two weeks' time.
Top scorer (Bob Clarke Trophy): Brandon Kozun, Calgary Hitmen
Matchless as a player, leading the league in points (107) and assists (75). He has 26 points through three rounds in the playoffs.
Neate Sager is a writer for Yahoo! Sports Canada. You may contact him at neatesager[at]yahoo[dot]ca.
- Jordan Eberle