Edmonton Eskimos’ Ryan King honoured with Tom Pate Award
Earlier this month, Edmonton Eskimos long-snapper Ryan King was named the team’s nominee for the Jake Gaudaur Veterans Award, which goes to player who best demonstrates the attributes of Canada’s veterans. King says just being recognized by the CFL was special enough.
“It’s such an honour,” he said. “We take a lot of pride in being community-owned in Edmonton.
“Obviously I’ve had the privilege of playing seven years now with this team, I’ve been able to build a phenomenal brand in the community and to get out as much as I can and give back to the city that gave me so much. [It’s] a huge focus of mine and always been since I first started playing.”
As it turned out King didn’t win the Jake Gaudaur Award, which was handed out as part of the CFL Awards at Edmonton’s Winspear Centre on Thursday night. The honour went to B.C. Lions fullback Rolly Lumbala.
King didn’t leave empty-handed, however, as he was named the recipient of the Tom Pate Award which is awarded annually by the CFL Players’ Association to a player with “outstanding sportsmanship and someone who has made a significant contribution to his team, his community and [the] association.”
“It means everything — hometown kid and born and raised here,” King said. “To play for seven years is not an easy thing to do.
“Obviously there’s a lot of support I’ve had in this city. [I’m] proud of people of Edmonton, proud to play for Edmonton and proud to receive this award for Edmonton. I’m a big believer that our team is very community-oriented and it does mean a lot to our organization.”
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Listen below: Hear from the 2018 Tom Pate Award winner Ryan King.
King is involved in a number of community initiatives in Edmonton, including the King McCarty Football Camp, which he shares with teammate Calvin McCarty.
In 2017, King partnered with KidSport Edmonton as an ambassador to create Kings Kids, which is a program that gives vulnerable teens the chance to attend Eskimos home games.
A member of the Eskimos has won the Tom Pate Award in the last two seasons. Adarius Bowman received the honour last year in Ottawa when he was still an Eskimo.
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