The Rod Langway Trophy is awarded annually to the Washington Capitals player who was acquired in trade and most benefited the Caps the throughout the regular season. "Most benefitted" is determined by tangible output (goals, faceoffs won), intangible factors (leadership, energy), and cost versus reward. The winner of trophy is determined by the bloggers of Rock the Red through bickering, bribing, voting, and several games of rock/paper/scissors. Previous winners of the Rod Langway Trophy were Jason Chimera in 2009-10 and Jason Arnott in 2010-11. Will another Jason steal away the trophy this year? Read on to find out!
The nominees are, in alphabetical order...
On June 24, 2011 (the first day of the 2011 NHL Draft)Troy Brouwer brought his size, grit, and Stanley Cup experience to the Capitals from the Blackhawks in exchange for Washington's first round pick in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. In his 82 games with the Caps this season, he contributed 18 goals and 15 assists for 33 points while leading the team with 247 hits (also good for 9th in the league) and being second among forwards with 60 blocked shots. Brouwer also showed he wasn't afraid to step up to defend his team mates, dropping the gloves 5 times - second among all Capitals. He is signed for one more year under his current contract of $2.35M.
Kundratek was acquired from the New York Rangers for Francois Bouchard on November 8, 2011 in a swap of minor league talent. The defenseman made his NHL debut January 11, 2012 in a 1-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins and played five games with the Bears' parent organization before being sent back down. During his short stint in the NHL, Kundratek was not able to notch a point, but was credited with 2 shots on goal, 3 hits, 4 blocked shots and 2 penalty minutes.
Players to be selected later
Goaltender Semyon Varlomov was traded to the Colorado Avalanche on July 1, 2011 for first round pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft and a second in either the 2012 or 2013 drafts. While the players have yet to be determined (The 2012 draft will be held on June 22–23, 2012 in Pittsburgh, PA), the Caps will undoubtedly benefit from the addition of early picks. Moving Varly was an ideal situation for the Capitals, as he did not accept Washington's qualifying offer in free agency and threatened to leave the team to play in the KHL. The trade was a win-win, stock piling draft picks while allowing re-signed Goalie Michal Neuvirth to grow into his role under free agent acquisition Tomas Vokoun.
And the winner is...
Other awards from the 2011-12 Capitals Awards Ceremony: