FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 1, 2020
TAYLOR RETURNS FOR ELEVENTH SEASON IN KALAMAZOO
Veteran forward, who won Team MVP and Fan Favorite awards, holds franchise record for games played.
KALAMAZOO, MI – The Kalamazoo Wings, proud ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Vancouver Canucks, announced Thursday that veteran forward Justin Taylor signed a contract to return to Kalamazoo for an eleventh season.
Taylor, 31, compiled 20 goals and 39 points in 49 games for the K-Wings in 2019-20. He also skated in seven games during a month-long American Hockey League tryout with the Utica Comets, the longest such AHL stint in his ten-year pro career.
“It’s an easy decision to be a part of the Kalamazoo Wings organization,” said Taylor. “We have three coaches who are invested in the team, community and strive for success. They continue to motivate me to be my very best, on and off the ice. I hope this season is a long one and has the ending we all dream of. I'm ready to help Kalamazoo bring home the Kelly Cup.”
The Mindemoya, Ontario set the K-Wings’ franchise games played record by skating in his 496th game Oct. 23, 2019 and finished the 2019-20 season with 542. Taylor is also third in team history in goals (213), just 26 behind leader Kevin Schamehorn (239) and fifth in points (403), just 71 behind Schamehorn (474).
“Justin has been a staple in our lineup and community for years,” said K-Wings Head Coach Nick Bootland. “He and his family are true ambassadors for Kalamazoo Wings hockey. He is a consistent producer that plays in all situations, and I know he has pushed his condition level so he can continue to improve.”
The 2007 sixth round pick of the Washington Capitals first joined Kalamazoo as a rookie in 2010-11 and has put together eight different 20-goal seasons and six 40-point seasons. Taylor set career highs with the K-Wings in 2016-17 with 61 points (31g, 29a) in 70 games. He has also appeared in 25 AHL games between Bridgeport, Utica and San Antonio.
The ECHL announced earlier this off-season that the 2020-21 hockey season will be delayed with an anticipated start date of Dec. 4, 2020. The league still plans on completing a 72-game regular season. More information regarding an updated schedule will be announced accordingly at a later date.
Stay tuned for more news and player signings as the 2020-21 Kalamazoo Wings roster takes shape, by heading to kwings.com.
The Kalamazoo Wings are a professional hockey team located in southwest Michigan that has been a staple in the Kalamazoo, MI professional sports landscape since 1974. The K-Wings compete in the ECHL and are the AA affiliate of the National Hockey League’s Vancouver Canucks. Kalamazoo plays their 36 regular season home games at Wings Event Center from October through April.