Presenting the 2013 BUSH Awards
Each year, the denizens of Burton Hockey celebrate their own with the annual Burton Hockey Awards. In the past few days we've seen the VRH awards and the 2014 Hall of Fame inductees. Today we end our look back at the 2013 season with the awards for BUSH.
Voting schematic: 1st place=10 pts; 2nd place=7; 3rd place=5; 4th place=3; 5th place=1
Statistically-based awards, of course, are those that are don’t have to be voted on as they are inherently decided by statistics.
Scoring Champion: Andrew Smart, VRH (195 points, 2nd title)
Smart grabs the title for the second time in three years, although Rob Hajdu made it a battle all the way to the wire thanks to not missing a session all year. Had BUSH played in July or August, we could easily be talking about Oliver Koth-Kappus here, too. That said, Smart was easily the leader in PPG this year and the title should stay with him as long as he plays regularly.
Goaltending Champion: Justin Gordon, BUSH/VRH (.851 save percentage, 2nd title)
A full 12 years after his first goaltending title, the man who was in goal for the first-ever session of Burton Hockey finally wins number two. This was Justin's first year back as a regular presence in Burton, and he impressed in both leagues, capping his return with a stunning .906 session in BUSH's September session. It was enough to prevent Bron Mach from taking back-to-back titles for the first time in his stellar career by just four points.
Ironman of the Year:Dominik Voser (77 games played, 2nd title)
After being beaten out last year by Bernie Koth-Kappus, Dom returns to take his second Ironman title over Rob Hajdu by a single game, giving Rob the dubious distinction of not being named Ironman despite not missing a session all year. Rob missed a handful of games this year by showing up late or leaving early, leading to this strange situation. Over in BUSH, Seamus O'Connor was the only person to play all 25 games.
Now we get to the awards that YOU voted on!
Organiser of the Year: Seamus O'Connor (1st award)
Organising sessions in BUSH this year was a challenges, but Seamus still managed to put together some sessions this year to keep the fire going in Burton. Unsurprisingly, there weren't really any other nominees. It may be surprising that it's only Seamus' first award in this category.
Comeback Player of the Year: Chris Jackins (1st award)
Runner-up: Jesse Gimbel
After six years away in New South Wales, it's a testament to his dedication and ability that, 1) he keeps returning to play every time he's back in Canada, and 2) he can take two years off in his mid-30s and come back with a stunning .900 session in goal. Truly inspirational, and we hope to have him back full-time sooner than later. Runner up goes to Gimbel for his solid performance in the crushing heat at the end of July.
Most Sportsmanlike Player:Kimberly McPhee Cain (1st award)
Runner-up: James Hewlitt
A momentous occasion as Kim becomes the first female player to win a Burton Hockey award. BUSH had a plenty of candidates here, with James, Oliver Koth-Kappus, Lee Orr, and Mark Harper all getting consideration.
Most Improved Player: Chris Jackins (1st award)
Runner-up: Seamus O'Connor
We're not sure what's in the water in Australia, but Chris came back with the session of a lifetime in his return to Burton with a .900 session two years after his last appearance. Seamus got screwed this year with the lack of BUSH sessions, because he played the best hockey of his life this year, which is remarkable considering his longevity.
Rookie of the Year: Mark Harper
Runner-up: Cory Bellhouse
Not the largest rookie crop this year, but Harper was a trooper in his first session.
Dual Threat of the Year: Seamus O'Connor (5th award)
Runner-up: Lee Orr
The man who helped pioneer the concept of the dual threat in Burton Hockey returns to the top of the podium for the record fifth time, although he was pushed late in the year by Lee Orr and his mammoth 208-save performance. It was hard to beat Seamus at any end of the rink this year.
Most Outstanding Defenceman: Oliver Koth-Kappus (9th award); Graeme Orr (2nd award)
A unique situation occurred this year where Oliver basically split the season between BUSH and VRH resulted in him getting votes in both leagues. Ultimately, he would finish second on the VRH ballot and would tie for first in BUSH, giving him an amazing 9th MOD award in 14th seasons. Sharing the award this year is Graeme Orr, who continues to tower on the BUSH blueline.
Most Outstanding Goaltender: Justin Gordon (3rd award)
Runner-up: Chris Jackins
Justin Gordon was lured back into Burton Hockey this year and it paid huge. After a great one-off performance in VRH to start the year, Justin returned to BUSH and dominated in net, finishing off the year with a brilliant .906 in a goaltending duel for the ages. The man he battled in net, Chris Jackins, finished second.
Most Outstanding Player: Seamus O'Connor (1st award)
Runner-up: Justin Gordon
After all these years, Seamus O'Connor has finally arrived as the top offensive force in BUSH. Combine that with continued brilliance in goal, and this was a solid choice this year, although Justin Gordon was his match in goal.
Most Valuable Player: Seamus O'Connor (3rd award)
Runners-up: Justin Gordon; Oliver Koth-Kappus
For the third time, Seamus O'Connor is your MVP. He never missed a game, he organised every session, he was the top skater, the leading scorer, and a top-three goaltender. A masterful season that was cut too short.
First All-Star Team
Justin Gordon (goaltender, 4th 1st team, 11th overall)
Kellan Nishida (2nd 1st team, 2nd overall)
K.J. O'Connor (4th 1st team, 9th overall)
Seamus O'Connor (8th 1st team, 12th overall)
Lee Orr (8th 1st team, 11th overall)
Second All-Star Team
Jesse Gimbel (1st 2nd team, 1st overall)
James Hewlitt (1st 2nd team, 1st overall)
Chris Jackins (goaltender, 3rd 2nd team, 3rd overall)
Graeme Orr (3rd 2nd team, 4th overall)
Oliver Koth-Kappus (8th 2nd team, 13th overall)
Oliver Koth-Kappus becomes the first player to be named to all-star teams in both leagues in the same year since the 2010 vote split, and sets a record with his 13th all-stat appearance, trailed closely by Seamus at 12. Kellan has made the first team in both of his Burton seasons. Chris Jackins returns to the all-star team after eight years away, and James and Jesse make their all-star debuts.
Most Dedicated Team
The highest honour in Burton Hockey. Simply put, these are the guys who have been there playing week-in, week-out. There’s no set limit on the number of players that can be named; just the limits players put on themselves by not coming. This year, we have a group of three BUSH players who stood out from the rest. Let's make the team even bigger next year; we want all of you on this list!
Oliver Koth-Kappus (12th award)
Seamus O'Connor (6th award)
Lee Orr (10th award)