Carey Price cleaned up at Wednesday night’s NHL Awards in Las Vegas, taking home hardware as the league’s player-voted MVP, its best goalie, and finally capping the hat trick with the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s most valuable player for 2015.
(Price actually received a fourth award in Nevada, sharing the William M. Jennings Trophy (for the league’s fewest goals against) with Chicago Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford.)
Price, who was born in Vancouver and raised in Anahim Lake, B.C., became the first goalie to win the Hart since Jose Theodore did it, also with the Montreal Canadiens, in 2002.
The Habs finished second in the Eastern Conference and Price led the NHL with a 1.96 goals-against average and a 0.933 save percentage. He also led the NHL with 44 wins, just ahead of fellow Vezina nominee Pekka Rinne’s 41.
“Obviously, I couldn’t have done this without my teammates,” Price said after winning the Vezina, his second time on the podium Wednesday night, as the NHL’s best goaltender.
Read: ‘NHL superstar Carey Price honoured by community in Anahim Lake‘ by Caitlin Thompson, Coast Mountain News (Aug. 256, 2014)
Price’s story is well-known: faced with a 10-hour round trip commute from Anahim Lake to his home rink in Williams Lake, B.C., Price’s father Jerry bought a plane to aid in his son’s love for hockey. Price played his junior hockey with the WHL’s Tri-City Americans and was drafted fifth overall by the Canadiens in 2005, eventually winning gold with Canada’s World Junior team in 2007 and Olympic gold in Sochi, in 2014.
Price is of both Ulkatcho and Nuxalk Descent, and represented his heritage upon accepting the Vezina:
“I would like to take a moment to encourage First Nations youth. A lot of people would say it’s very improbable that I would make it to this point in my life, and I made it here because I wasn’t discouraged. I worked hard to get here, took advantage of every opportunity that I had, and I’d really like to encourage First Nations youth to be leaders in their communities.
“Be proud of your heritage, and don’t be discouraged.”
(You can watch Price’s full Vezina acceptance speech below.)
Earlier this season, Price was featured in a memorable video with a boy, Trent Leon, who flew from his hometown of Anahim Lake to Montreal to meet his idol, Price, to join the goalie on the ice in Quebec and to present him with a gift from his classmates in B.C.
That video, produced by Air Canada, is also below:
VIDEO: Carey Price wins Vezina Trophy (June 24, 2015)