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67's Defenceman Thomas Sirman Wins Roger Neilson Award

May 14, 2024 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL)
Ottawa 67's News Release

OTTAWA - The Ontario Hockey League announced, today, that Ottawa 67's defenceman Thomas Sirman has been named winner of the Roger Neilson Memorial Award, as the league's top post-secondary academic player.

"Throughout his time with the Ottawa 67's, Thomas has demonstrated exceptional leadership and dedication, both on the ice and in the classroom," said 67's General Manager James Boyd. "We are very pleased to see him recognized for his academic achievements."

After rehabbing from offseason knee surgery, Sirman returned to the 67's lineup before Christmas, serving as an alternate captain for the first time in his OHL career. The Aurora, Ontario native went on to suit up in 40 games, scoring three goals, and 13 assists.

"I am extremely happy to see Thomas rewarded with the Roger Neilson Award for the top marks he's earned on his courses at Queen's University," added 67's Housing and Education Coordinator Eileen Duffin. "Thomas sets the academic bar high, and is an excellent role model for the 67's high school players who are moving on to university next year."

Drafted in the third round, 60th overall by Ottawa in the 2020 OHL Priority Selection, Sirman has gone on to appear in a total of 160 games, recording 12 goals and 51 assists for 63 points, while continuing his education through Queen's, as he works towards his Bachelor of Arts degree.

"I want to thank everyone in the Ottawa 67's organization for their role in helping me receive this award; including James Boyd, Jan Egert, Dave Cameron, my billets, teammates and our academic advisor Eileen Duffin, who has helped me continue my education since I arrived in Ottawa," said the 20-year-old defenceman. "Education is extremely important in my family, so being able to share this award with them is amazing. I'm very fortunate to have been able to begin my university education while playing in the OHL."

First presented in 2005, the Roger Neilson Memorial Award has gone to a member of the 67's a league-leading six times. Sirman is the third member of the team to win it in the last six years; after Adam Varga took home the honour in 2021 and 2022, and Sasha Chmelevski was named the winner in 2019.

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