Steel, a signed first round pick of the Anaheim Ducks, led the entire Canadian Hockey League (CHL) with 131 points in 66 games. The Sherwood Park, AB product scored 50 goals, second most in the WHL and was second in assists with 81.
“It’s hard to express what winning Player of the Year in the WHL means to me,” said Steel. “I want to thank my incredible teammates and our coaching staff in Regina, without them, this wouldn’t be possible.”
For the second time in three years, Regina Pats Head Coach and GM John Paddock is the Dunc McCallum Memorial Trophy Winner as WHL Coach of the Year. Paddock was also named the WHL Executive of the Year, winning the Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy.
During the 2016/17 regular season, John Paddock led the Pats to 52 wins and 112 points; the most in franchise history. The team started the year going 18 games without a regulation loss, tying a team record. In addition, the Pats won 11 straight games, three separate times under John’s guidance, helping Regina win the Scotty Munro Memorial Trophy as regular season champions.
“This is really a team honour,” said Paddock. “We have a special group of players that give our staff their complete cooperation and I share this with our coaches: Dave, Brad, Robbie and Landon.”
Paddock executed a total of 12 trades in preparation for and during the 2016/17 season. In the process, he acquired forwards Dawson Leedahl, Nick Henry, Wyatt Sloboshan and Jeff de Wit, as well as defencemen Josh Mahura, Dawson Davidson and Jonathan Smart.
“It is quite an honor to be recognized in this category,” Paddock said. “We were fortunate enough to have Brooks, Wagner, Harrison, Steel and Zborovskiy in place when our group joined the organization, with lots of hard work by our scouting staff led by Dale McMullin and assistants Dave Struch and Gord Pritchard we were able to put this team together to have the kind of year we had. It is a significant award for our organization.”
The Regina Pats Hockey Club has won the 2016/17 Jim Piggott Memorial Trophy, awarded to the WHL Business and Marketing Team of the Year.
The Pats enjoyed an historic season on and off the ice in 2016-17. The team had its best regular season in the organization’s 99 year history. That success reflected increases in every aspect of the business. The Pats experienced record growth in attendance, sponsorship and revenue thanks, in part, to added efforts in promotion, game night experience and community initiatives.
Regina’s average attendance was 5456, including 14 regular-season sellouts, an increase of almost 1000 fans per game from the previous year. The average attendance is the highest in franchise history. In addition, the team has sold out 11 consecutive home games in the post-season.
“We are extremely humbled to be receiving this award,” said Regina Pats Chief Operating Officer Stacey Cattell. “Our entire organization including ticketing, community and customer relations, communications, merchandise, administration and game day volunteers have worked tirelessly to elevate the Pats brand throughout the community. This award is shared by everyone and is a reflection of the true team effort exhibited every day.”
(Courtesy Phil Andrews)