Photo by Sean Carpenter and Scobel Wiggins – Ultiphotos.com
The Most Valuable Player Award goes to the player that has made the largest positive impact on their team. This means that not only are they performing at a high level all season long, but that they are raising the play of their teammates. The players taking home this year’s MVP awards dominated their rivals, both leading their conference in scoring, while also helping their teams each earn their first trip to the MLU Championship.
The Portland Stags have been the most successful franchise in the history of the Western Conference. Since a 1-9 season in 2013, the Stags have been the class of the west, winning 26 of their 30 regular season games since 2014. Cody Bjorklund has lead the Stags in scoring each of his four season with the team. In 2016, Bjorklund established himself as MLU’s most potent offensive player, setting the record for most assists in a season (41) while securing himself in the top spot for highest scoring player in league history with 189 career points. Bjorklund also took home the 2016 Scoring Title with 57 points scored over the course of the regular season. Bjorklund sits atop several of MLU’s career leaderboards: Points (189), Assists (114), Games Played (39) and Points Played (763).
While this is Bjorklund’s first MVP award, odds are he has his eyes set on a larger prize, as the Stags prepared for their first shot at the MLU Championship. Standing in his way will be another team looking for their first title, and lead by the other MVP.
The Philadelphia Spinners were the class of the Eastern Conference in 2016, finishing 9-1 in the regular season, with their only loss coming on the road to the Boston Whitecaps in a single goal overtime thriller. Powering the Spinner’s conference leading offense was their own MVP, second year veteran Billy Sickles. Bursting onto the scene for the Spinners in 2015, Sickles took home Rookie of the Year honors last season and established himself as one of the league’s most dynamic offensive players. In 2016, Sickles continued to show that he is one of the most potent offensive threats in the league, leading the Eastern Conference in points scored (41).
- 1. Cody Bjorklund (PDX)
- 2. Raphy Hayes (PDX)
- 3. Brad Houser (SEA)
- 3. Timmy Perston (PDX)
- 3. Peter Woodside (PDX)
Others receiving votes: Taylor Cascino (SF), Erik Hunter (VAN), Evan Klein (SEA), Taylor Nadon (VAN), Gabe Saunkeah (SF), James Yeager (SF)
- 1. Billy Sickles (PHL)
- 2. Delrico Johnson (DC)
- 3. Marques Brownlee (NY)
- 4. Matt Glazer (PHL)
- 5. Piers MacNaughton (BOS)
Others receiving votes: Lloyd Blake (DC), David Brandolph (PHL), Christian Foster (BOS), Ben Katz (BOS), Greg Martin (PHL), Sean Mott (NY), Michael Panna (PHL)