For the second consecutive year, forward Zach O’Brien from the Newfoundland Growlers has received the ECHL’s Sportsmanship Award. O’Brien leads the league in assists with 63 on the year and currently sits third in points, tallying up 86 through 57 games this season. He is also second in the league for powerplay scoring at 37 points, having a league-leading 29 assists on the powerplay. The Newfoundland Growlers forward managed to do all of this while only possessing a total of 80 penalty minutes this season.
This is O’Brien’s third time receiving the Sportsmanship Award in five seasons, joining an exclusive club of players to win the award multiple times. He previously won the award during the 2021-2022 and 2018-2019 seasons. Other multi-time winners include retired forward Jamie Ling and the Toledo Walleye’s Shane Berschbach.
The ECHL’s Sportsmanship Award is granted to the player who displays the best sportsmanship and showcases a high standard of play. The other 2022-2023 award nominees included forward A.J White of the Idaho Steelheads, the Adirondack Thunder’s Shane Harper, Indy Fuel forward Alex Wideman, and Cincinnati Cyclones center Louie Caporusso.