The award is given to the player who most exemplifies “perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.” The recipient will be announced as part of the league’s award show in June.
Polak sustained a broken leg in the first round of the playoffs against the Washington Capitals last April. He needed 13 screws inserted as part of reconstructive surgery to repair the damage.
He recovered and signed a one-year, $1.1-million contract on Oct. 27 to return to the Leafs. The 31-year-old blueliner has two goals and 11 points in 49 games.
Jason Blake was the last Leaf to win the award in 2008.