Islanders Nominate Weight for King Clancy
Monday, 04.18.2011 / 10:02 AM ET / News
New York Islanders
A veteran of 19 NHL seasons, Weight has been a leader wherever he’s played, both on and off the ice. Since bringing his leadership qualities to the Islanders in 2008, Weight has been a role model for a team comprised of young, up-and-coming players. He’s shown them what it takes to make it as a player in the NHL and how to represent the Islanders in the community.
When Weight went down with a back injury in November, he could have stepped away to recuperate on his own, but knew he had a responsibility to his young teammates. He began working with the group on the ice at practices, sharpening the power play and other situational plays. After four months of rehab, team doctors could still not clear Weight to play and his season was deemed over. For the last two weeks of the regular season, Weight stepped behind the bench with the rest of the coaching staff to continue to lead the team during their final games.
Weight went above and beyond his role as team captain on the ice this season, but his presence may have been felt even stronger off the ice. He took his leadership role just as seriously in community events as he did in games and practices. Weight took on the team spokesman role throughout the season and was a great ambassador for both the Islanders and the NHL on Long Island and throughout North America.
Weight’s first philanthropic venture of the season was a live auction for the Islanders Children’s Foundation in September, where he served as MC and host. The week before the season opener, Weight brought together the entire roster for the Isles’ annual Children’s Foundation Day at Adventureland, a Long Island amusement park where fans got the first chance to meet the players and interact with their heroes.
Weight led the way again in November during the team’s annual School Day event. Before the team fanned out to schools across Long Island for educational assemblies, he gathered the players for instruction on their talks. Weight knew the importance of making these trips as role models to the impressionable children and made sure his teammates were prepared. He helped answer their questions and set their expectations for the kids. Weight made a trip on his own time to his daughter’s school to encourage reading and education.
When the holiday season rolled around, Weight made sure to set an even greater example for his teammates of how to take care of the community. He brought together over half of the team to go shopping on their own time to purchase gifts for local children in need. He then led the charge at local hospitals to hand-deliver the presents. As a parent himself, Weight knows these are the most important and endearing appearances he and the team will make all year, so he guides everyone to spend as much time as possible with these kids.
Once the new year began and Charles Wang’s Lighthouse International Tournament brought youth hockey players from China, Finland and Japan to Nassau Coliseum, Weight again stepped to the forefront to serve as an ambassador for our great sport. He made appearances on Good Morning America, NHL Live and MSG game broadcasts to promote the international tournament and hockey in general to national audiences. He also attended tournament games to support the local and international teams participating.
Right around the time the tournament finished up, the league-wide Hockey for Huggies campaign kicked off and, as expected, Weight volunteered all the time he could to this initiative. He and his wife recorded the public service announcement that aired on Islanders television broadcasts and in the arena during home games. He also kickstarted the program by collecting donations from his teammates.
Few players in the NHL have put forth the kind of time and effort that Doug Weight did this season. Since before training camp started, through a near season-long injury, Weight exemplified the meaning of humanitarianism. From the ice to the toy store, from the hospitals to the schools, Weight has meant more to this community of players and fans than most could ever dream of. It is with sincere gratitude and pride that the New York Islanders organization nominate Doug Weight for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy.