With Vincent Trochek already taking home the OHL’s scoring title last week, the Panthers’ organization received even more good news today as University of North Dakota center and future Florida Panther Corban Knight was announced as a finalist for this year’s Hobey Baker Memorial Award which is given annually to the top player in NCAA Division I men’s hockey. Knight joins fellow nominees Greg Carey (St. Lawrence), Carsen Chubak (Niagara), Johnny Gaudreau (Boston College), Eric Hartzell (Quinnipiac),Danny Kristo (North Dakota), Drew LeBlanc (St. Cloud State) and Ryan Walters (Nebraska Omaha) as the 10 finalists for the award which will be given out on April 12.
Statistically, Knight is having a season that is most definitely worthy of the recognition he is now getting. Knight finished the 2013 season tied for 7th in national scoring with a career-high 48 points, including a career-high 33 assists. Although he has the ability to score, Knight has really stood out in the assist column this year as his 33 assists put him tied for second nationally and his 24 first assists leads all skaters in men’s Division 1 hockey.
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If Knight were to win this year’s Hobey Baker Award, it would not be the first piece of hardware that he has taken home this season. In December, Knight was honored as the national college hockey player of the month after scoring a team-leading 11 points (6G 5A) in 5 games while also earning a +9 rating and winning 61.1% of his face-offs.
Knight’s greatest statistical accomplishment of the 2012-2013 season was his spectacular 19-game point streak which was University of North Dakota’s longest point streak in 25 years. Already known by many Panther fans, Knight also proved that he is an icon at the college level by leading all 77 national candidates in fan voting during Phase I of “Vote for Hobey” campaign. Amazingly, Knight received more than twice as many votes as the next-closest player.
With the Florida Panthers having a season to forget in the NHL, the accomplishments of players like Vincent Trocheck and Corban Knight should be a constant remind to fans that brighter days are ahead. I encourage all Panthers’ fans to tune in to the award ceremony on April 12th to see if Corban Knight takes home this years Hobey Baker Memorial Trophy.
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