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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Byron named inaugural Mister Sparky Spark Plug of the Year

Paul Byron, a 2007 draft pick of the Buffalo Sabres, was was named the inaugural Mister Sparky Spark Plug Player of the Year today.

Paul Byron 2010-2011 Mister Sparky
Spark Plug of the Year Award Winner
Shawn LaPlante, from Mister Sparky in Portland, said "Paul Byron is a hard-working team player who always gives 110%. We were looking for a player who provides game-changing plays both offensively and defensively. His work ethic is impressive and it's evident every time he steps onto the ice. We are proud to have Paul represent Mister Sparky, America's On Time Electrician as the Spark Plug of the Year."

Byron, an alumni of the QMJHL

Other Award Winners

The Portland Pirates announced their annual team award winners in a ceremony following today’s game against the Springfield Falcons at the Cumberland County Civic Center.

Marc-Andre Gragnani was chosen as a double winner selected by the fans as the Most Popular Player as well as the Unsung Hero. The veteran defenseman, currently on recall with the Buffalo Sabres, is second in team scoring with 12 goals and 48 assists for 60 points in 63 games. His assist and point totals are new Pirates records for a defenseman. Gragnani’s season also included capturing the Eddie Shore Award as the AHL’s outstanding defenseman as well as being named a First Team All-Star.

For the second straight season Mark Mancari was selected as the Pirates Most Valuable Player, presented by Maine Medical Center. The 25 year-old London, Ontario native, who is also on recall with the Sabres, scored 32 goals and 32 assists for 64 points in 56 games with the Pirates during the 2010-11 season. At the time of his recall Mancari, a First Team AHL All-Star, was the leading goal scorer in the AHL and among the league leaders in points.
Luke Adam won the Jack Button Memorial Award, presented annually to honor Buffalo’s top prospect.  The Award is named in honor of the late Jack Button, who was a member of the Washington Capitals Hockey Department from 1979 until his death in 1996. Adam, the AHL’s Rookie-of-the-Year and a member of the AHL’s All-Rookie Team, finished his freshman campaign with 29 goals and 33 assists for 62 points in 56 games to rank second in AHL scoring.

Derek Whitmore was selected for the Tom Ebright Award, presented to the player who best exemplifies what it means to be a member of the Portland Pirates, as envisioned by team founder, the late Tom Ebright. Whitmore was also recognized for being selected as the Pirates IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year Award winner for a third straight season.

Mark Parrish was chosen by his teammates as the Player’s Player Award winner. Parrish was identified by his peers as a player they felt represents the team’s character and values while Paul Bryon was named the Sparkplug of the Year, presented by Mister Sparky, and the Allied Home Mortgage Three Star Award winner.

Each season, the Pirates honor a special partner who has shown exemplary partnership and support during the year. This season, the Pirates honored C5 Sports as their 2011 Partner of the Year.

The Pirates begin their pursuit of the 2011 Calder Cup in a best-of-seven series against the Connecticut Whale beginning Thursday, April 14th at 7 p.m. at the Cumberland County Civic Center. Pirates Playoff Hockey MISSION: 16W, powered by Time Warner Cable continues with Game 2 of the series Saturday, April 16th at 7 p.m. at the CCCC. Advance tickets are $18 for Adult Premium Main Deck, $17 for Adult Main Deck and $14 Adult Quarter Deck. Advance tickets for Youth/Senior/Student in the Premium Main Deck are $13 and $12 in the Main Deck or Quarter Deck. Get your tickets at the Civic Center Box Office, by calling (207) 775-3458 or at


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