Tulsa Oilers forward Ben Gordon is one of five finalists for the Central Hockey League Man of the Year Award. The CHL Man of the Year award is 'presented annually to the Central Hockey League player adjudged to have best exemplified strong leadership qualities on and off the ice, while making significant and noteworthy humanitarian contributions to his community.' The winner will be announced on Tuesday, March 25.
In addition to leading the Oilers with 83 points this season, Gordon has been a tremendous ambassador in the community over the last two seasons. This year, the Minnesota native has visited several local elementary schools to speak to kids about a variety of topics including health and nutrition, the importance of hard work and education, and about pursuing a passion. Always engaging and entertaining, Gordon is able to connect with kids on their level and never passes up an opportunity to share his love and knowledge of the game of hockey.
Last season Gordon was the recipient of the Oilers' Community Service Award and this season, the 29-year old has continued to make an impact on the community and a positive impression on everyone he meets.
"Ben is a respected leader in our dressing room and a great representative of our organization," said Bruce Ramsay, Oilers Head Coach. "In two short seasons, Ben has touched a lot of lives and I can't think of anyone more deserving for the CHL Man of the Year Award."
On a calendar shoot last season to benefit children with cancer, Ben was introduced to B.W., a four-year old boy battling leukemia. Since that time, Ben and his wife Maile, have been in constant contact with B.W. and his family. Ben has invited B.W. to several games this season and has also presented B.W. with autographed sticks and other Oilers merchandise. The two are best buddies and their relationship is a perfect example of the giving, compassionate spirit that Ben possesses.
Gordon, who finished second in the voting for "Best Overall Player" and "Most Valuable To His Team" in the annual CHL Best-of-the-Best poll, is also a finalist for CHL Most Valuable Player.
The finalist for the CHL Man of the Year award are:
Sebastian Geoffrion, Arizona
Calin Wild, Brampton
Sean Zimmerman, Denver
Ben Gordon, Tulsa
RG Flath, Wichita