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 Flint Firebirds

Firebirds Announce Team Award Winners

March 26, 2024 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL)
Flint Firebirds News Release

Flint Firebirds left wing Connor Clattenburg vs. the London Knights
Flint Firebirds left wing Connor Clattenburg vs. the London Knights
(Flint Firebirds)

FLINT, Mich. - The Flint Firebirds held their annual Players Award Banquet on Sunday afternoon, following the conclusion of the 2023-24 regular season. Head Coach Paul Flache and the rest of the team announced the winners of eight awards with the entire roster, coaching staff, support and business staff, player's families and billet families in attendance.

Flint named rookie defenseman Rylan Fellinger its Student Athlete of the Year. A 13th round pick in the 2023 OHL Priority Selection, Fellinger spent the entire season with the Firebirds an appeared in 58 games while also excelling in the classroom.

Defenseman Matthew Jenken and goaltender Nathan Day shared the team's Iron Man award. Jenken was the only player on the roster to appear in all 68 games, during which he recorded two goals and 16 assists. Day played 54 games in goal for Flint and was 25-26-1-1 with a 3.73 goals against average and .868 save percentage. The Edmonton Oilers prospect finished the year fourth among OHL goaltenders with 3,124 minutes played.

Overage forward Oliver Peer was recognized as the team's top scorer. Peer finished with a career-high 80 points to pace the Firebirds and did so with 37 goals and 43 assists. He was acquired by Flint at the trade deadline from the Windsor Spitfires and in 30 games as a Firebird had 15 goals and 18 assists.

Defenseman Blake Smith was given the team's Blue Collar Player award. Smith played in 65 games and was deployed as a shutdown defenseman and among the team leaders in time on ice. He tallied two goals and 11 assists and was second on the team with a +6 plus/minus.

Second-year forward Nathan Aspinall and overage forward Nolan Dann were honored with the Most Improved Player award. Aspinall enjoyed a breakout season in his second year with the Firebirds and in the OHL. He played 65 games and totaled 18 goals and 16 assists, a huge jump from the one goal and three assists he totaled in 29 games during his rookie season. Dann set a career-high in his final season in the OHL with 64 points on 28 goals and 36 assists. He was second on the team in points and improved upon the 13 goals and 20 assists he had in 64 games combined between the Firebirds and Niagara IceDogs in the 2022-23 season.

Jimmy Lombardi was named the team's rookie of the year. A second-round draft choice in the 2023 OHL Priority Selection, Lombardi appeared in 62 games during his first season as a Firebird and finished with seven goals and 13 assists. Lombardi led all Flint rookies in points and after notching only one goal and four assists in his first 40 games, he finished with six goals and nine assists in his last 22.

The Firebirds named Tristan Bertucci their Top Defenseman. Bertucci, who was signed by the Dallas Stars to an NHL entry-level contract earlier this month, led all Flint defensemen with 44 points on 10 goals and 34 assists in 61 games played. He also paced the Firebirds with a +8 plus/minus and is the franchise record holder with a +46 plus/minus over 186 career games for Flint.

Coulson Pitre was named the Firebirds' Most Valuable Player. In his third season with Flint, Pitre recorded 27 goals and 28 assists in 55 games played. A 2023 third round pick of the Anaheim Ducks, Pitre was named the sixth captain in franchise history in January.

The Firebirds finished the regular season with a record of 30-33-4-1 and earned the eighth seed in the Western Conference. Flint will take on the London Knights in the first round of the OHL Playoffs, beginning with Game 1 on Friday at the Budweiser Gardens in London at 7 p.m. The Firebirds will play their first home game of the series in Game 3 on Tuesday, April 2 at 7 p.m. at the Dort Financial Center. Playoff tickets are on sale now at the Dort Financial Center box office and online at

Images from this story

Flint Firebirds left wing Connor Clattenburg vs. the London Knights
Flint Firebirds left wing Connor Clattenburg vs. the London Knights


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