The Carolina chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association has nominated Nathan Gerbe for the Masterton Trophy for the second straight season.
Gerbe was always told he was too little to play hockey. When he did finally upset the odds and make the NHL, Gerbe had such severe back issues that he said his wife had to dress him, and he wondered if his playing career might be over.
But Gerbe not only recovered but resurrected his career with the Hurricanes in 2013-14. The 5-foot-4 winger is the image of perseverance, playing in more than 380 NHL games over eight seasons.
This season, he opened his home to rookie defenseman Noah Hanifin, another Boston College product. Gerbe is also heavily involved with Defending the Blue Line and other military-support charities.
This is Gerbe's second straight Masterton Trophy nomination.