HULL, UK – Rapid Solicitors Hull Stingrays player-coach Sylvain Cloutier and top point-scorer Guillaume Doucet have been short-listed for the Elite League coach and forward of the year awards respectively.
Cloutier, in his fifth year at Hull Arena, has helped Stingrays break several club records this term, including a points-high, and will go into the final weekend of the regular season battling to secure a play-off spot along with three other sides.
The 40-year-old is up against Paul Adey, who led Belfast Giants to the league title, and Jeff Hutchins, whose Dundee Stars side won the Gardiner Conference.
Doucet has enjoyed a stunning debut season for Stingrays, leading the team in scoring with 81 points (48 goals and 33 assists) from 58 games to sit second overall in the league, in which he also has the highest number of powerplay goals (18). Ryan Ginand (Coventry Blaze) and Kevin Saurette (Belfast Giants) have also been nominated for Forward of the Year.
The categories were voted for by the coaches and GM’s of the 10 Elite League clubs and the winner of each award will be revealed and presented during the Elite League Awards Show on the day of the play-off final on Sunday April 6 at the National Ice Centre in Nottingham.
Cloutier said: “It is an honour to have been voted in by my peers. We have had a good season so far but I could not have done it without my players.
“At the start of the season if you had told me we would get 50 points I would have expected to finish four or fifth – we got to the final four weekend with 36 points!
“We have set some new club records and I am proud of what the guys have accomplished. Hopefully we can extend our season on Sunday and see what happens.
“I want to congratulate Paul and Hutchy on their nominations too. Belfast won the league several weeks ago and are 23 points clear which is a big accomplishment and Hutchy has put together a really good team and has done a great job in Dundee.”
Doucet said: “It is an honour and not something I expected when I came here. I have not won many awards but it is always nice to be nominated and recognised for hard work.
“I didn’t know what to expect coming in because it was a new league and I had never seen any games. I just wanted to make an impact and help the team by being a threat and it has gone above what I expected.”