Ryan O’Reilly named a Selke Trophy finalist

Ryan O'Reilly was named a Selke Trophy finalist for the first time in his career on Wednesday night.
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

ST. LOUIS — After posting the best numbers of his career in many categories during his first season with the St. Louis Blues, Ryan O’Reilly has a chance to take home some valuable hardware.

The NHL announced Wednesday evening that O’Reilly has been named a finalist for the 2019 Frank J. Selke Memorial Trophy, which is awarded annually to the forward who “best excels in the defensive side of the game.” O’Reilly joins the Boston Bruins’ Patrice Bergeron and the Vegas Golden Knights’ Mark Stone as finalists for the award.

The 28-year-old O’Reilly was acquired by the Blues via trade from the Buffalo Sabres on July 1, 2018. During the 2018-19 regular season, the Clinton, Ontario, native set career highs in assists (49), points (77) and plus/minus (+22) while pacing the NHL overall in faceoff wins with 1,086. O’Reilly was one of just two forwards to post at least 77 points and a plus-22 rating while playing over 160 total shorthanded minutes. He led the Blues to become just the seventh team since 1967-68 to earn a postseason berth after being last in the NHL standings at any point after New Year’s Day. In January, O’Reilly represented the Blues at the 2019 NHL All-Star Game – his second career appearance. He has finished in the top 15 in Selke voting four times in his career — including a sixth-place finish in 2013-14 — but this will be his first time as a finalist.