Toronto, Ont. – The Ontario Hockey League today announced that Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Nick Robertson of the Peterborough Petes is the 2019-20 recipient of the William Hanley Trophy awarded to the OHL’s Most Sportsmanlike Player presented by Ashley HomeStore.
Three-time winner Nick Suzuki passes the torch to Robertson, who led the OHL with 55 goals in just 46 games while adding 31 assists for a total of 86 points. The 5-foot-9, 164Ib. left winger registered a plus-29 rating along with 40 penalty minutes in his third OHL season and went on a 14-game goal-scoring streak from January 9 to February 8. Robertson was held without a goal just nine times over the course of the season, scoring a pair of hat-tricks while recording two different five-point performances along the way. His 1.20 goals-per-game pace is the seventh-highest single season figure since 1980-81, third among players under the age of 19 trailing Oshawa’s Eric Lindros (1.25, 1990-91) and Tony Tanti (1.21, 1980-81). Nick follows in the footsteps of older brother Jason, who led the Canadian Hockey League in scoring with 117 points as a member of the Niagara IceDogs during the 2018-19 season.
“I really appreciate being recognized as the OHL’s Most Sportsmanlike Player of the Year,” says Robertson. “I’d like to thank my general manager Mike Oke, head coach Rob Wilson, the Petes staff, and my teammates.
“I’d also like to thank Petes fans – you all made the PMC an electrifying building, got us excited and motivated to win and, win or loss, you were always there to support us.”
An 18-year-old product of Northville, Mich., Robertson was within striking distance of a Petes franchise single season goal-scoring record of 63 held by Scott Tottle (1983-84) when the season came to a premature end. He ended the year three goals shy of 100 on his OHL career, owning 174 points (97-77–174) over 162 career regular season games in a Petes uniform after being the club’s first round (16th overall) pick in the 2017 OHL Priority Selection. Robertson was widely recognized in the 2019-20 OHL Coaches Poll, finishing in six different categories including the Eastern Conference’s Most Dangerous in the Goal Area along with Best Shot. He represented the United States in the 2020 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship and was a second round (53rd overall) pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2019.
“This is a proud moment for Nick and the Peterborough Petes,” said general manager Mike Oke. “He is one of the top players in the OHL and plays within the rules. Leading not only the OHL, but the CHL in goals is a special accomplishment. From the moment he joined the Petes, Nick has approached and played the game the right way and is more than deserving of this award.”
The William Hanley Trophy is awarded each year based on a selection by the 20 General Managers of the Ontario Hockey League. All 20 teams submit a nominee but are not permitted to vote for their own candidate. The trophy is presented by the OHL to commemorate William Hanley, former Secretary-Manager of the Ontario Hockey Association for over 25 years.
Robertson joins a host of former Petes to have won the award including Ryan Spooner (2009-10), Mike Ricci (1989-90), Scott Tottle (1984-85), Doug Jarvis (1974-75), Mickey Redmond (1966-67) and Andre Lacroix (1965-66). Joining Suzuki as current NHL players to have been awarded the William Hanley Trophy include Mike Amadio (North Bay 2016), Dylan Strome (Erie 2015), Connor McDavid (Erie 2014), Brandon Saad (Saginaw 2012) and Jeff Carter (Sault Ste. Marie 2005).
Robertson will be the OHL’s nominee for CHL Sportsman of the Year, an award that will be announced in the coming weeks.