Rockets’ Mikael Backlund Named BOSTON PIZZA CHL Player of the Week

By League Press Release

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced that forward Mikael Backlund of the Kelowna Rockets is the Boston Pizza CHL Player of the Week for the week ending May 3.  Backlund, a recipient of the honour for the second time this post-season, scored five goals and one assist for six points in three games with a plus-minus rating of plus-4.

Backlund and the Rockets hosted game six of the Western Conference Championships last Monday night leading the series 3-2 against the Vancouver Giants.  He scored a hat-trick including his ninth goal of the post-season which counted as the overtime winner as first star of the 5-4 win, clinching the series win for the Rockets.

The WHL Championship Series began Friday night in Calgary where the Rockets grabbed a game one win over the Hitmen 3-1 with Backlund contributing an assist on the opening goal.  He also scored two goals including the game-winner and insurance marker both in the third period Saturday night in the 5-2 game two win leading the Rockets to a 2-0 series lead.

Backlund, a 20-year-old from Vasteras, link” class=”HFlinkstyle”>Sweden, is tied for third in WHL playoff scoring with 11 goals and eight assists for 19 points in 16 games.  Playing in his first WHL season, Backlund competed at the 2009 World Junior Hockey Championships and won a silver medal with Team Sweden before joining the Rockets on January 12.  He was a first round selection, 24th overall by the Calgary Flames at the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.

Cédric Lalonde-McNicoll of the Shawinigan Cataractes was the recipient of the award last week and is the QMJHL nominee once again after scoring two goals and one assist in two games.  All three points were scored in a first star performance Saturday night in a 5-3 win over the Drummondville Voltigeurs to tie the QMJHL Championship Series 1-1.

Andrei Loktionov of the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires was also considered for the award after scoring three goals and two assists for five points in two games.  Loktionov was named first star of the game Friday night in a 5-3 win over the Brampton Battalion in game two of the Rogers OHL Championship Series with the game-winning goal and one assist.

2008-09 Boston Pizza CHL Player of the Week

May 5 – Mikael Backlund, Kelowna Rockets
Apr 28 – Cédric Lalonde-McNicoll, Shawinigan Cataractes
Apr. 21 – Mikael Backlund, Kelowna Rockets
Apr. 14 – Eric Tangradi, Belleville Bulls
Apr. 7 – Dale Mitchell, Windsor Spitfires
Mar. 31 – Mitch Fadden, Tri-City Americans
Mar. 24 – Dany Massé, Drummondville Voltigeurs
Mar. 17 – Drayson Bowman, Spokane Chiefs
Mar. 10 – John Tavares, London Knights
Mar. 3 – Benjamin Casavant, P.E.I. Rocket
Feb. 24 – Matt Caria, Plymouth Whalers
Feb. 17 – Jeff Skinner, Kitchener Rangers
Feb. 10 – Yannick Riendeau, Drummondville Voltigeurs
Feb. 3 – Drayson Bowman, Spokane Chiefs
Jan. 27 – Paul Byron, Gatineau Olympiques
Jan. 20 – Brayden Schenn, Brandon Wheat Kings
Jan. 13 – Steven Anthony, Saint John Sea Dogs
Jan. 6 – Joel Broda, Moose Jaw Warriors
Dec. 16 – Robert Slaney, Cape Breton Screaming Eagles
Dec. 9 – John Tavares, Oshawa Generals
Dec. 2 – Andrej Nestrasil, Victoriaville Tigres
Nov. 25 – Scott Glennie, Brandon Wheat Kings
Nov. 18 – Mathew Sisca, Niagara IceDogs
Nov. 11 – Yannick Riendeau, Drummondville Voltigeurs
Nov. 4 – Dana Tyrell, Prince George Cougars
Oct. 28 – Jamie Benn, Kelowna Rockets
Oct. 21 – Matthew Pistilli, Shawinigan Cataractes
Oct. 14 – Justin DiBenedetto, Sarnia Sting
Oct. 7 – Stefan Della Rovere, Barrie Colts
Sept. 30 – Joel Broda, Moose Jaw Warriors
Sept. 23 – Michael Stinziani, Cape Breton Screaming Eagles