The Chicago Wolves are proud to announce that center Pat Cannone has been named the team’s winner of the IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year award for his outstanding contributions to the Chicago community during the 2015-16 season.
While Cannone earned Most Valuable Player honors at the AHL’s All-Star Challenge and has ranked as the Wolves’ leading scorer all season, the 29-year-old Bayport, New York, native has been at his best while leading the team’s community efforts throughout the Chicago area.
The Wolves captain set the tone in the fall while he prepared for his third season in Chicago. He decided the best way to give back to the community would be to create “Pistol’s Pals,” which partnered with Bear Necessities Pediatric Cancer Foundation and Little Heroes Pediatric Cancer Foundation to bring patients and their families to games. At the end of the night, he presents the patient with a jersey while signing autographs, taking pictures, and offering a locker-room tour when the patient is up to it.
At midseason, he extended his program to include “Wolves Wish,” which provides special experiences for Wolves fans facing adversity. Game after game, win or lose, Pat chatted with fans and simply spent time with them to give their families something to focus on other than their hardship or illness. There wasn’t a single fan that met him who didn’t walk away feeling special and with a big smile on their face.
Cannone also has served as the spokesmen for many of the Wolves community endeavors and fundraising events — including the “Read To Succeed” program that benefited thousands of local students and the “Stick It To Breast Cancer” campaign that raised money for A Silver Lining Foundation to provide mammograms for women who cannot afford them. His energy and kindness shone through every time.
Cannone is now one of 30 finalists for the AHL’s 2015-16 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, which honors the overall IOA/American Specialty AHL Man of the Year. The league award is named after the former Hershey Bears forward and AHL All-Star who died in 1997 following a 16-month battle with leukemia. The winner of the Yanick Dupre Memorial Award will be announced by the American Hockey League in April.