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Blazers' captain wins award; Tutka wins Writer of the Year (Tom Borrelli Award)


The National Lacrosse League announced today that Boston Blazers forward Dan Dawson has won the Sportsmanship Award for the 2009 season. Dawson's leadership both on and off the floor played a significant role in the first-year success of the expansion Boston Blazers franchise.

The eight-year pro led the Blazers offense with 104 points on the season (30 goals, 74 assists), and scored the second-most points of any player in the league this season. He served as team captain, and his leadership skills were invaluable on a young team that surprised many by posting a 10-6 record and making the playoffs in its expansion season. Dawson also became a recognizable face of the team in the Boston community. Back on the floor, he was only assessed a total of eight penalty minutes while playing in all 16 games of the regular season.

The league also announced that Paul Tutka is the winner of the Tom Borrelli Award, given annually to the Writer of the Year. Tutka, a senior writer for NLL Insider and Inside Lacrosse Magazine, covers the league extensively and in great detail for, a news and commentary website that is operated by Inside Lacrosse Magazine. Tutka becomes the first writer to win the Tom Borrelli Award twice, having also won the award in 2008. The award is named in honor of the late Tom Borrelli, the longtime Buffalo Bandits beat writer for The Buffalo News. Borrelli also covered the NLL for Lacrosse Magazine. He passed away on November 20, 2008, following injuries from an accident that took place while covering a high school football game in Buffalo. Borrelli was recognized by the NLL Hall of Fame in 2007, and was the first member of the media to be recognized by the Hall of Fame for their contributions to the game.

The National Lacrosse League will announce the winners of the 2009 season awards over the next ten days, leading up to the NLL Championship Game on the weekend of May 15-17. The schedule of announcements is as follows:

Tuesday, May 5th: Sportsmanship Award & Writer of the Year Award, also known as "The Tom Borrelli Award"

Wednesday, May 6th: Executive of the Year Award & Team Public Relations Executive Award

Thursday, May 7th: The Head Coach of the Year Award, also known as "The Les Bartley Award" & The General Manager of the Year Award, presented by SIRIUS Satellite Radio

Saturday, May 9th: East and West Divisional Finals; Buffalo at New York, 7:30pm ET & San Jose at Calgary, 9pm ET

Monday, May 11th: Defensive Player of the Year, Transition Player of the Year & Goaltender of the Year Awards

Tuesday, May 12th: Rookie of the Year Award and All-Rookie Team

Wednesday, May 13th: All-Pro Teams

Thursday, May 14th: Most Valuable Player Award, presented by Reebok

Weekend of May 15th-17th: 2009 NLL Championship Game

The awards are voted on by team executives, general managers and head coaches of the league's twelve member clubs.
© 2009 National Lacrosse League. The team names, logos and uniform designs are registered trademarks of the NLL.

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