Islanders Captain Anders Lee Nominated For NHL’s King Clancy Trophy

Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire

If you looked up the word “captain” or “leader” in the dictionary, there should be a photo of Anders Lee next to the definition.

I would also put his photo next to the definition of “great human being”.

To those points, Lee is the Islanders’ nominee for the National Hockey League’s 2020-21 King Clancy Memorial Trophy which is presented “to the player who best exemplifies leadership qualities on and off the ice and has made a noteworthy humanitarian contribution in his community.”

The award was first presented in 1988 by the NHL’s Board of Governors to honor three-time Stanley Cup Champion Frank “King” Clancy”, who was a beloved figure in the NHL for decades as a player, referee, coach, manager and goodwill ambassador.

Lee would certainly be a worthy recipient considering how much he means to the team and the community, especially when you consider the work he does with “Jam Kancer In The Kan”.   Just on a personal note, my son Bradley worked with that organization for his Bar Mitzvah project in 2018 and conducted a “Kan Jam” tournament at our home to raise money for the pediatric cancer center at the hospital where he and his brother Jared were both born.   On the morning of the event, we learned that Anders was going to personally match, dollar for dollar, the amount of money that was raised that day.

We might be biased, but everyone in our house is rooting for him to win the award and we know from experience that he is a wonderful human being.

“Anders is to me very special,” said Islanders Head Coach Barry Trotz.  “There are athletes that have a presence.  I think since we made him captain it’s just grown.  I think he always had it but he probably held back a little bit with not being a captain for a few years.  Since we made him captain, you see the growth and why he would be nominated for this award.”

PITTSBURGH, PA – FEBRUARY 20: New York Islanders center Anders Lee (27) skates in the NHL game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the New York Islanders on February 20, 2021, at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. (Photo by Jeanine Leech/Icon Sportswire)

All of the nominees were selected by their respective NHL teams while the winner will be selected by a committee of NHL executives including Commissioner Gary Bettman and Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly.  The winner will be selected based on the following criteria.

* Clear and measurable positive impact on the community

* Investment of time and resources

* Commitment to a particular cause or community

* Commitment to the League’s community initiatives

* Creativity of programming

* Use of influence; engagement of others

“From a captain’s standpoint, he’s the last person who thinks about himself,” said Trotz.  “He thinks about team first, other players, families, all that and also the community.  He loves (Long) Island.  He loves helping people and that’s just sort of in his DNA.  That’s something that is required for what I think is a good captain in my mind that you have that DNA that you care about not only your teammates but also your community and your organization and he does.”

The winner of the King Clancy Memorial Trophy will receive a $25,000 donation to benefit a charity or charities of his choice.  The two runners-up each will receive a $5,000 donation to benefit a charity or charities of their choice.

Congratulations Anders on the nomination!

About the Author

Peter Schwartz

Peter Schwartz is a contributor covering the Islanders for NY Sports Day while also writing about general sports in the New York/New Jersey area. In addition to his column, Peter also hosts his “Schwartz On Sports” podcast as he interviews players, coaches, and other sports personalities. He is also currently a sports anchor for WFAN Radio, CBS Sports Radio, and WCBS 880 radio while also serving as the public address announcer for the New York Cosmos soccer club.

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