SPRINGFIELD, Mass. … The American Hockey League announced today that center Jason Krog of the Chicago Wolves has been named the winner of the Les Cunningham Award as the AHL’s most valuable player for the 2007-08 season, as voted by coaches, players and members of the media in each of the league’s 29 cities.
Named a 2007-08 First Team AHL All-Star last week, Krog leads the American Hockey League with 68 assists and 104 points in 77 games heading into the final weekend of the regular season. His 36 goals are one off the pace, leaving him with a possibility of becoming just the third player in AHL history to lead the league in all three major offensive categories in the same season.
Krog, who has been held scoreless in back-to-back games just three times all season, has recorded points in 59 of 77 games – including 31 multiple-point efforts – to pace the Wolves’ league-leading offense. His goals, assists and points all represent career highs for the ninth-year pro, and he becomes the second consecutive member of the Wolves to win the Les Cunningham Award following Darren Haydar in 2006-07.
A native of Fernie, B.C., Krog has recorded 124 goals and 230 assists for 354 points in 300 career AHL games entering the weekend. He also has 198 NHL games on his resume, compiling 21 goals and 37 assists. Krog reached the Calder Cup Finals with Bridgeport in 2002 and the Stanley Cup Finals with Anaheim in 2003, and won the Hobey Baker Award as the top player in U.S. college hockey while at the University of New Hampshire in 1999.
This award, which was first presented in 1948, honors the late Les Cunningham, a five-time AHL All-Star and three-time Calder Cup champion with the original Cleveland Barons who left the AHL in 1947 as the league’s career scoring leader with 579 points. Previous winners of the Les Cunningham 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), Paul Gardner (1985, ’86), Jody Gage (1988), John Anderson (1992), Brad Smyth (1996), Derek Armstrong (2001), Eric Boguniecki (2002), Jason Ward (2003), Jason LaBarbera (2004), Jason Spezza (2005) and Darren Haydar (2007).
Currently in its 72nd season of play, the AHL continues to serve as the top development league for all 30 National Hockey League teams. More than 83 percent of today’s NHL players are American Hockey League graduates, and more than 45 million fans have attended AHL games across North America since the start of the 2001-02 season. Sixteen clubs will continue to vie for the league’s coveted championship trophy when the 2008 Calder Cup Playoffs get underway next week.