(Born August 19, 1981) -- Count yourself as a true hockey fan if you know the identity of Taylor Pyatt’s father. Nelson Pyatt bounced around pro hockey circles in the 1970s. He might be best remembered for being a member of some really bad Capitals’ teams when they were newcomers in the league ... not that their play was Nelson’s fault.
Pyatt was a first-round draft pick of the Islanders in 1999. He came into the league as big, tough forward. Pyatt scored 18 goals as a rookie and was considered a good prospect.
He obvioiusly attracted the attention of the Sabres that year. When the Islanders wanted to acquire Michael Peca in 2001, Buffalo asked for and received Pyatt and Tim Connolly. It looked like a very good deal under the circumstances, as Peca was in the middle of a contract dispute.
Pyatt played most of the next four seasons in Buffalo. He never showed the scoring touch he had in junior, peaking with 14 goals in 2002-03. Pyatt was traded to the Vancouver Canucks in 2006.
The winger spent three years in Vancouver, and then played three years in Phoenix. Over this past summer, Pyatt landed as a free agent with the New York Rangers. His brother Tom played for Tampa Bay.
--- Budd Bailey