Any athlete has to be dedicated to make the highest level of their chosen sport. For some that means moving away from home when they are young. Some have to play for a long time in the minor leagues before achieving their dreams. Every player has to show dedication to hockey. To be nominated for the Masterton Trophy, a NHL player is supposed to show dedication, perseverance, and sportsmanship above and beyond what most players do. This is where the nomination of Ondrej Pavelec fails to meet some of the most basic criteria.
Pavelec is a player who persevered the same way every other NHL player has. He is also the player who failed to inform his team about a DUI charge when in negotiations for his current contract. His dedication level is so high that according to the media that nominates players for each chapter, this is the first year Pavelec has dedicated himself to personal fitness. This does not scream dedication beyond what is normal in NHL players. Pavelec is a NHL goalie who is being played an amount that matches his talent level, and yes he even complained about that a bit. He is not the type of player who really overcame anything to be the same player he has always been. Pavelec has not shown the traits of a Masterton nominee, but here we are.
Ondrej Pavelec is a NHL player, but he has not shown the required criteria for the Masterton Trophy. Instead, he has been a below average goalie with questionable work ethic who has lied to his team. There are players on the Jets who have persevered to make the NHL; Michael Hutchinson for example went from the ECHL to the NHL in one year. The need for each team to have a Masterton nominee is a debate for another day, but the PHWA should be able to self-police themselves and realize that someone who has a DUI on their record and did not tell their team about it probably should not be getting a nomination.