Watch emotional tribute to former Blackhawks player Bryan Bickell at the NHL Awards
LAS VEGAS – On a night meant to honor the best players for their efforts on the ice in the 2016-2017 season, the best moment of the came from a player who didn’t play much at all.
Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis on November 11th, Bryan Bickell played in just 11 games for the Carolina Hurricanes last season. It was his first and only campaign of his ten-year career that he didn’t spend with the Blackhawks.
Yet his battle with the disease and eventual return at the end of the season inspired many from Raleigh to Chicago and around the National Hockey League.
It was for that reason that Bickell was honored at the league’s annual awards ceremony at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on Wednesday night. A three-minute video discussing his journey after it was discovered he had MS through his final game stirred up emotions, but Bickell did so more with his tribute to his family.
With wife Amanda by his side, Bickell tearfully thanked the Blackhawks and Hurricanes, hockey fans, along with his family that was in T-Mobile Arena to watch the tribute.
But he saved his most emotional words for the woman standing next to him.
“When I said no, she said yes. She picked me up when I was down,” said Bickell of his wife. “If it wasn’t for Amanda, for everything….Thank you Amanda.”
Many are saying the same to Bickell after a memorable career and inspirational final season.