The award is presented annually to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition in the ECHL as determined in a vote of ECHL coaches, broadcasters, media relations directors and media members.. The trophy was named in honor of John A. Daley in 1997. Daley, who passed away in 1996, was one of the founding fathers of the ECHL, serving as general manger and minority owner of the Johnstown Chiefs from the inception of the team in 1988 until 1994.
The ECHL will announce the winner of the Coach of the Year and recipient of the John Brophy Award on Tuesday.
Spink, who was named to the ECHL All-Rookie Team last week, led ECHL rookies with 33 goals and nine game-winning goals while finishing third among rookies with 75 points. He was fourth among first-year players with 19 power-play points and was fifth with 42 assists, nine power-play goals and 190 shots on goal.
The 24-year-old spent the previous four seasons at Colgate University, recording 128 points (45g-83a) in 148 career games. He made his pro debut last season with the Walleye, picking up four points (2g-2a) in five games.
ECHL Rookie of the Year Winners2016-17 Tyson Spink, Toledo Walleye2015-16 Matt Willows, Florida Everblades2014-15 Tyler Barnes, Toledo Walleye2013-14 William Rapuzzi, Idaho Steelheads2012-13 Ryan Zapolski, South Carolina Stingrays2011-12 Dustin Gazley, Elmira Jackals2010-11 Ben Street, Wheeling Nailers2009-10 Justin Donati, Elmira Jackals2008-09 Bryan Ewing, Wheeling Nailers2007-08 David Desharnais, Cincinnati Cyclones2006-07 Colton Fretter, Gwinnett Gladiators2005-06 Alex Leavitt, Alaska Aces2004-05 Joe Tenute, South Carolina Stingrays2003-04 Kevin Doell, Gwinnett Gladiators2002-03 Jason Jaffray, Roanoke Express2001-02 Frederic Cloutier, Louisiana IceGators2000-01 Scott Stirling, Trenton Titans1999-00 Jan Lasak, Hampton Roads Admirals1998-99 Maxime Gingras, Richmond Renegades1997-98 Sean Venedam, Toledo Storm1996-97 Dany Bousquet, Birmingham Bulls1995-96 Keli Corpse, Wheeling Thunderbirds1994-95 Kevin McKinnon, Erie Panthers1993-94 Dan Gravelle, Greensboro Monarchs1992-93 Joe Flanagan, Birmingham Bulls1991-92 Darren Colbourne, Dayton Bombers1990-91 Dan Gauthier, Knoxville Cherokees1989-90 Bill McDougall, Erie Panthers1988-89 Tom Sasso, Johnstown Chiefs