SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that center Travis Morin of the Texas Stars has been voted the winner of the Les Cunningham Award as the AHL’s most valuable player for the 2013-14 season.
The award is voted on by coaches, players and members of the media in each of the league’s 30 cities.
Since notching four points on opening night, Morin has been the American Hockey League’s leading scorer wire-to-wire in 2013-14 and has 32 goals and 55 assists for 87 points with a plus-16 rating in 65 games with Texas heading into the final weekend of the regular season. Leading the offense for the regular-season champion Stars, Morin has nearly doubled his 44-point output from a year ago while setting franchise records for assists and points in a season. The CCM/AHL Player of the Month in both October and January, Morin began the season on a 10-game scoring streak and has gone without a point in consecutive games on just four occasions all year. He took part in the 2014 AHL All-Star Classic in February and was named a 2013-14 First Team AHL All-Star last week.
A seventh-year pro from Brooklyn Park, Minn., Morin has also appeared in four games with the Dallas Stars this season, picking up an assist for his first career NHL point. In 349 career AHL games with Texas and Hershey, Morin has totaled 99 goals and 196 assists for 295 points, and he is the Stars franchise’s all-time leader in goals (99), assists (195), points (294) in 344 contests with the club.
The AHL’s most valuable player award honors the late Les Cunningham, a member of the AHL Hall of Fame who was a five-time league All-Star and three-time Calder Cup champion with the Cleveland Barons. Previous winners of the award include Carl Liscombe (1948, ’49), Johnny Bower (1956, ’57, ’58), Fred Glover (1960, ’62, ’64), Mike Nykoluk (1967), Gilles Villemure (1969, ’70), Doug Gibson (1975, ’77), Pelle Lindbergh (1981), Ross Yates (1983), Paul Gardner (1985, ’86), Tim Tookey (1987), Jody Gage (1988), John Anderson (1992), Don Biggs (1993), Derek Armstrong (2001), Jason LaBarbera (2004), Jason Spezza (2005), Darren Haydar (2007), Keith Aucoin (2010), Corey Locke (2011), Cory Conacher (2012) and Tyler Johnson (2013).
In operation since 1936, the American Hockey League continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. Nearly 90 percent of all players competing in the NHL are AHL graduates, and through the years the American Hockey League has been home to more than 100 honored members of the Hockey Hall of Fame. The 2013-14 regular season ends on Saturday, and then 16 clubs will continue to vie for the league’s coveted championship trophy when the 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs get underway next week.