Tynan’s competition for the award
When T.J. Tynan won the Les Cunningham Award (AHL MVP) as a member of the Colorado Eagles last year, he edged out San Diego Gulls forward Andrew Poturalski for the award. While Poturalski led the league in scoring last season with 43 points, Tynan’s 27 assists in 27 games, 35 points, and being a 1.30 point-per-game player were good enough to win the award. The MVP is voted by coaches, players, and media members.
A year later and both of those players are fighting for the award again. Tynan has 98 points in 61 games with the Ontario Reign, while Poturalski has 97 points in 69 games With the Chicago Wolves. Both players have the chance to reach 100 points on the year.
Why T.J. Tynan should win MVP
T.J. Tynan’s stat line: 61 games, 14 goals, 84 assists, 98 points, +12 rating, 1.61 PPG
With Tynan going scoreless last night in the Ontario Reign’s 5-1 loss on Saturday, it’s doubtful that Tynan will break George “Red” Sullivan’s record of 89 assists in a season. He currently is at 84, and unless he goes absolutely bonkers next Saturday against Henderson, he won’t break the record.
But, his 84 assists are tied for third-most in AHL history as George “Red” Sullivan (89) and Jason Spezza (85) have had more assists in a season than him. The Ontario Reign leads the league with 3.87 goals per game. The reason why is because of Tynan’s elite playmaking ability to set others up for scoring, especially on the powerplay. Watching the Ontario Reign power play, Tynan is the straw that stirs the drink. Everything goes through him. His 46 power-play assists and 49 power-play points lead the AHL.
If that is not enough, his 1.61 points-per-game is the highest in a season since Darren Haydar accomplished that feat in the 2006-2007 season with the Chicago Wolves. Haydar won MVP that season as well. It’s clear that Tynan and Poturalski are the two finalists for the MVP this season, just like last year.
Please consider the season that Tynan has had with assist numbers, how the power play runs through him to get others great scoring opportunities, and his 1.61 points-per-game average should be enough consideration for back-to-back MVP honors. Unfortunately, the winner of the award is up to the voters and not me. If he wins, Tynan will be the first player to win the award in back-to-back seasons for two different teams since Paul Gardner did it in the 1984-1985 and 1985-1986 seasons. Do you think Tynan will win the MVP again this season?
(Main photo credit: American Hockey League)