The Amerks have named defenseman Nathan Paetsch as the team's Man of the Year for his contributions to the Rochester community during the 2017-18 season.
Paetsch becomes one of 30 finalists for the American Hockey League's Yanick Dupre Memorial Award, honoring the league's overall Man of the Year. The award is named for the former Hershey Bears forward and AHL All-Star who died in 1997 following a 16-month battle with leukemia.
Drafted by the Sabres in 2003, Paetsch spent three seasons in Rochester and played for Buffalo from 2006 until 2010. He returned to the Amerks this season after five years with Grand Rapids, where he won two Calder Cup titles.
The 34-year-old suffered a broken leg in just his third game of the season and was out for nearly three months. He regularly met with fans and youth organizations at games as part of the Captain’s Club program.
Paetsch took part in the Amerks' Reading Power Play Program at the Fairport Public Library, visited three Rochester-area hospitals at Christmastime and helped raise awareness of polar bear and ice-conservation efforts in partnership with the Seneca Park Zoo. He also provided on-ice instruction for the Rochester IceCats, a team of individuals with developmental disabilities.
Story topics: Nathan Paetsch