31. december 2009 / PATRIK ELIAS BACK TO TOP FORM (updated)
It has been a season of redemption and milestones for Patrik Elias. Since recovering from two offseason surgeries that sidelined him for the first 13 games of the year, Patrik has been as dominant as ever, lighting up the scoresheet, shutting down the leagueâ€™s top scorers on the penalty kill, and leading his team to its 13th straight playoff appearance.
Shortly after reaching the 300-goal plateau in mid-December, Patrik suffered a concussion from being hit hard by Avalanche defenseman, Ryan Wilson, and missed ten games on the road to recovery. He returned just in time to captain the Czech Republic team for the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, leading the team in scoring with two goals and two assists in five games despite the squad failing to get past the Quarterfinals.
Late this season, Patrik leapfrogged past former team Bobby Holikâ€™s 747 points to become the second all-time scorer among Czech players in NHL history.
For the Devils, Patrik has spent a great deal of the year at center and has enjoyed success with several different line combinations, most recently finding chemistry with newly acquired sniper Ilya Kovalchuk.
On March 31st, Patrik was named the New Jersey chapter of the Professional Hockey Writersâ€™ Associationâ€™s nominee for the Masterton Trophy for perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey due to his charitable work as the Czech Ambassador of UNICEF.