PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL on Wednesday announced that Matt Register of the Colorado Eagles is the CCM Hockey ECHL Defenseman of the Year for 2016-17 as determined in a vote of ECHL coaches, broadcasters, media relations directors and media members.
The ECHL Defenseman of the Year award is presented annually to the defensive player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-around ability in the position.
David Makowski of Allen finished second, followed by Colorado’s Jake Marto, Kevin Schulze of Wheeling and Toledo’s Nolan Zajac.
“I know that Matt had his detractors, but he proved them wrong and his play through 72 games also proved that his best is yet to come,” said Eagles president and general manager Chris Stewart.
Register also won the award in 2013-14 while with Ontario and joins four-time winner Chris Valicevic and three-time winner Tom Nemeth, both members of the ECHL Hall of Fame, as the only players to win the Defenseman of the Year award multiple times. He also joins current Eagles head coach Aaron Schneekloth as the second Eagles defenseman to capture the honor.
Named to the All-ECHL First Team last week, Register led ECHL defensemen with 64 points, seven game-winning goals and 218 shots on goal while he was second with 18 goals, tied for second with 46 assists and second with 29 power-play points (8g-21a).
ECHL Defenseman of the Year Award Winners
2016-17 Matt Register, Colorado Eagles
2015-16 Mathew Maione, Wheeling Nailers
2014-15 Mike Little, Florida Everblades
2013-14 Matt Register, Ontario Reign
2012-13 Sacha Guimond, Gwinnett Gladiators
2011-12 Aaron Schneekloth, Colorado Eagles
2010-11 Eric Regan, Elmira Jackals
2009-10 J.C. Sawyer, Toledo Walleye
2008-09 Dylan Yeo, Victoria Salmon Kings
2007-08 Peter Metcalf, Alaska Aces
2006-07 Jon Awe, Gwinnett Gladiators
2005-06 Ryan Gaucher, Alaska Aces
2004-05 Ray DiLauro, Wheeling Nailers
2003-04 Corey Neilson, Pensacola Ice Pilots
2002-03 Jim Baxter, Mississippi Sea Wolves
2001-02 Duncan Dalmao, Roanoke Express
2000-01 Tom Nemeth, Dayton Bombers
1999-00 Tom Nemeth, Dayton Bombers
1998-99 Chris Valicevic, Louisiana IceGators
1997-98 Chris Valicevic, Louisiana IceGators
1996-97 Chris Valicevic, Louisiana IceGators
1995-96 Chris Valicevic, Louisiana IceGators
1994-95 Brandon Smith, Dayton Bombers
1993-94 Tom Nemeth, Dayton Bombers
1992-93 Derek Booth, Toledo Storm
1991-92 Scott White, Greensboro Monarchs
1990-91 Brett MacDonald, Nashville Knights
1989-90 Bill Whitfield, Virginia Lancers
1988-89 Kelly Szauter, Erie Panthers
The Eagles return home to face the Idaho Steelheads in Game One of the ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs on Friday, April 14th at 7:05pm.
Tickets for the 2017 Kelly Cup Playoffs are on sale now and can be purchased by calling the Eagles ticket office at 970-686-SHOT (7468) or purchase online at www.ColoradoEagles.com.