Zellweger of Silvertips is named WHL Defender of the Year

CALGARY, Alberta – Ellen Zellweger has already made history with Everett Silvertyps in the WHL 2021-22 season. On Wednesday night he did it again.

Everett’s star defender became the first Silvertip to ever be named WHL Defender of the Year, as he was awarded the Bill Hunter Memorial Trophy during the league’s awards ceremony, which took place almost Wednesday night.

Zellweger, an 18-year-old from Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, was nominated for the award, named Defender of the Year by the American Division. He won the award, ahead of Gannon LaRoque of the British Division (Victoria), Kaiden Gule of the Central Division (Edmonton) and Dentan Mateychuk of the Eastern Division (Moose Jaw).

“It is a great honor for me to receive this award for the best defender in the WHL,” Zellweger said during his speech. “I couldn’t have gotten here without my teammates, coaching staff and everyone involved with Everett. I also want to thank my parents and family for always keeping me prepared and ready to perform at the highest level. It was a great season and it is a great honor for me to play with the team there. It’s a team award, if anything. ”

Zellweger spent the best offensive season in the history of the Everett defender. Although he played in just 55 games, Zellweger led the league in points by defenders (78), and his points per game (1.42) were the most of all WHL defenders in 32 years. His amount of points also set a new franchise record for one season for defender points.

“Olen has done an incredible job for us this season,” Everett coach Dennis Williams said in a press release. “He worked incredibly hard to get to where he is. His attention to detail, his hockey IQ, his competitions, that’s what sets him apart as a player. We are very proud of everything he managed to do. ”

As a recognized WHL Defender of the Year, Zellweger, who was selected in the second round of the 2021 NHL Draft by the Anaheim Ducks, is now eligible for the KHL Defender of the Year award, where he will fight winners with the OHL and QMJHL.

Everett was also named Business of the Year by WHL. This is the third time in the franchise’s 19-season history that “Tips” has received an award by joining the 2009-10 and 2018-19 seasons.


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