SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that Jordan Gross of the Colorado Eagles is the winner of the Eddie Shore Award as the AHL’s outstanding defenseman for the 2021-22 season.
The award was voted on by coaches, players and members of the media in each of the league’s 31 cities.
Gross had a breakout campaign in 2021-22, leading all league defensemen with 65 points in 61 regular-season games with Colorado. His 55 assists were tied for the most by an AHL blueliner in the last 22 years, and he also tallied 29 points on the power play and recorded 190 shots on goal – both league highs for defensemen – while accumulating a plus/minus rating of plus-20. Gross was also voted a First Team AHL All-Star for 2021-22.
Gross signed with the Colorado Avalanche on July 31, 2021, after three seasons in the Arizona Coyotes organization. The native of Maple Grove, Minn., has totaled 25 goals and 94 assists for 119 points in 179 career AHL games with Colorado and Tucson, and has recorded four assists in 10 NHL contests with Colorado and Arizona.
This award was first presented by the AHL in 1958-59 in honor of the late Eddie Shore, a member of both the Hockey Hall of Fame and the American Hockey League Hall of Fame who is widely regarded as one of hockey’s greatest defensemen. Shore won a total of seven Calder Cups in his career, including two as the general manager of the Buffalo Bisons and five as the longtime owner of the Springfield Indians. Previous recipients of the Eddie Shore Award include Steve Kraftcheck (1959), Bob McCord (1961, ’67), Al Arbour (1965), Jim Morrison (1966), Noel Price (1970, ’72, ’76), Brian Engblom (1977), Terry Murray (1978, ’79), Dave Farrish (1982), Brad Shaw (1987), Dave Fenyves (1988, ’89), Eric Weinrich (1990), Darren Rumble (1997), John Slaney (2001, ’02), Niklas Kronwall (2005), Johnny Boychuk (2009), Mark Barberio (2012), Justin Schultz (2013), T.J. Brennan (2014, ’16), Sami Niku (2018), Jake Bean (2020) and Ryan Murphy (2021).
In operation since 1936, the American Hockey League continues to serve as the top development league for all 32 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 winner of the 2021-22 Les Cunningham Award (most valuable player) will be announced Monday.