National top rookie award renamed in honor of the late Tim Taylor

The Hockey Commissioners Association announced Monday that is plans on naming its Division I men’s national rookie of the year award the Tim Taylor Award, starting with the 2013-2014 season.

“Coach Taylor spent a good deal of his career identifying and developing young hockey players, whether during his time at Yale or through his many years with USA Hockey,” said HCA president Steve Hagwell in a statement. “I can’t think of a better pairing than the young men who earn this award and the memory of Tim Taylor.”

Taylor passed away on April 27 following a four-year battle with cancer.

Hockey East commissioner Joe Bertagna, who was coached by Taylor at Harvard and later coached with him on two Team USA squads, was in agreement with Hagwell.

“Tim was a teacher his entire adult life,” added Bertagna. “Many of us saw this at the college level and we also watched in admiration as he helped assemble the U.S. junior teams that won gold medals in recent years. His impact on hockey in the United States is incalculable, given the number of players and coaches he influenced.”

The HCA national rookie of the year award was first handed out in 2007, with St. Cloud State forward Andreas Nodl claiming the honors. The 2013 winner was Providence goalie Jon Gillies.