Jets’ Ladd, Ducks’ Getzlaf, Hawks’ Toews this year’s finalists for Mark Messier Leadership Award

The NHL announced the finalists for this season’s Mark Messier Leadership Award, and all three are captains: Chicago’s Jonathan Toews, Winnipeg’s Andrew Ladd, and Anaheim’s Ryan Getzlaf.

Winnipeg Jets winger Andrew Ladd, Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf and Chicago Blackhawks superstar Jonathan Toews are the finalists for this season’s Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award, the league announced Monday.

All three finalists are captains for their respective teams, and one of the three will win their first Messier Leadership Award, which since the 2006-07 campaign recognizes one individual “who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice during the regular season”.

Getzlaf amassed 25 goals and 70 points in 77 regular-season games with Anaheim; and the 29-year-old led the Ducks to the best record in the Western Conference. The 29-year-old Ladd scored 24 goals and 62 points in 81 games for a Jets squad that made the playoffs for the first time since relocating to Winnipeg from Atlanta in 2011. The 27-year-old Toews posted 28 goals and 66 points in 81 regular-season games for the Blackhawks, and once again is having an immense impact in the playoffs.

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Nominees for the Messier Leadership Award can be suggested by NHL personnel, teams and fans, but the three finalists and eventual winner are selected by Messier himself. Past winners include retired NHLers Chris Chelios, Daniel Alfredsson and Mats Sundin, as well as active players Zdeno Chara, Sidney Crosby, Jarome Iginla and Shane Doan. Kings captain Dustin Brown was last year’s winner.