BOSTON (CBS) — The last two seasons have not been much fun for Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller. But he has been the consummate professional for Boston’s hockey team, and a constant presence around the team during his lengthy rehab from a serious kneecap injury.
Miller’s commitment to the team has earned him Boston’s nomination for the 2020 Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, as selected by the Boston chapter of the Professional Hockey Writer’s Association. The Masterton Trophy is given to the player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.
“Since working his way up to the NHL six years ago, Kevan Miller has shown nothing but dedication, perseverance and sportsmanship in his time with the Bruins. He worked his way into the NHL as an undrafted college player and he’s been a strong, courageous and tough player on the ice that perfectly embodies the Bruins way,” said Professional Hockey Writers Association Boston Chapter Chair Joe Haggerty. “This season injuries challenged his dedication and perseverance while keeping him out of any games. But Miller never backed down and never stopped working for a return. None of it was easy for Miller, but his resilient response perfectly embodies the spirit of a Bill Masterton Trophy candidate.”
Miller didn’t play in a single game for Boston in the 2019-20 season as he continued his recovery from serious knee injuries he suffered during the 2018-19 season. He played just 39 games two seasons ago after fracturing his kneecap, which he re-injured while attempting to come back for Boston during their Stanley Cup run.
The setbacks haven’t deterred Miller from putting in hours at the gym and in the training room, and his dedication is much appreciated by the team. His injury also did not stop him from being an active member of the Boston community, serving as a spokesperson and vocal advocate for the Brain Aneurysm Foundation among other charitable endeavors.
The winner of the Masterton Trophy is selected by a vote of the 31 chapters of the Professional Hockey Writers Association at the conclusion of the regular season. Zdeno Chara (2019, 2017), David Backes (2018), Jonas Gustavsson (2016) and Patrice Bergeron (2015) were previous Masterton nominees by the Bruins. Phil Kessel is the last Bruins player to win the award, taking home the trophy in 2006.