IIHF Male Player of the Year: Roman Cervenka, Team Czechia


Czechia’s captain, Roman Cervenka, was awarded the title of IIHF Male Player of the Year for 2024 after narrowly beating Swiss defender Roman Josi in a vote carried out by over 100 media representatives from the top 22 nations participating in the Men’s World Championship program. Cervenka secured 31.3 percent of the vote, just slightly ahead of Josi’s 30.3 percent.

At 38 years old, Cervenka guided Czechia to a gold medal at the Men’s World Championship while serving as the team captain. He ended up tied for sixth place in tournament scoring, accumulating a total of 11 points and achieving a +7 rating. During the Quarterfinal game against Team USA, where the latter was eliminated from contention for the gold medal, Cervenka stood out as one of the top three players with an assist in the 1-0 shutout loss for the Americans. In his domestic league games for Rapperswil in Switzerland, Cervenka showcased his skills by recording an impressive 40 points in 47 games (12g, 28a).

In order to be eligible, players were required to have participated in at least one IIHF tournament at any level within the year, such as the World Championship, U20, or U18, in addition to competing in the top-tier domestic league of their respective country.

Other accolades from the IIHF for 2024 are as follows:

Roman Josi, a Swiss defenseman, helped his team win their third silver medal in 11 years and was acknowledged for his defensive skills. He was part of the World Championships All-Star Team and ranked 3rd in scoring among NHL defensemen in the 2023-24 season with 85 points while playing for the Nashville Predators.

Lukas Dostal (G, CZE) excelled for the Czech team in the recent WM, earning honors as the WM Directorate Best Goalie and a spot on the All-Star Team. He achieved a 6-2 record with three shutouts, notably in the quarter-finals and Gold-Medal Game. In his debut NHL season with the Anaheim Ducks, Dostal finished with a 14-23-3 record and a .902 save percentage.

Kevin Fiala was honored with the Men’s Worlds MVP and was named the IIHF Directorate Best Forward for his outstanding performance during the Swiss team’s silver medal victory. In the NHL, he tallied an impressive 73 points while playing for the Los Angeles Kings for the 2023-24 season.

The complete list of 2024 Men’s finalists included Roman Cervenka and Lukas Dostal from Czech Republic, Kevin Fiala and Roman Josi from Switzerland, Erik Karlsson from Sweden, and John Tavares from Canada. Connor Bedard won the Player of the Year title last year and was the inaugural recipient of this award.

Karen Zehner

Credentialed Beat Writer covering the ECHL Atlanta Gladiators. Diving into the world of slap shots, penalty kills, and the game we love. [@RunwithK] on socials.

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