BOSTON (CBS) — Former Bruins player and Dorchester native Jimmy Hayes has died. Hayes was just 31 years old.
No cause of death has been reported, but the Boston Globe is reporting that Hayes was pronounced dead at his Milton home on Monday morning. The death is not considered suspicious, per the Globe.
Hayes leaves behind a wife and two young boys, who are two years old and three months old.
Hayes grew up in Dorchester and played at the Noble and Greenough School in Dedham before a three-year collegiate career at Boston College. He won an NCAA Championship with the Eagles as a sophomore in 2010.
Hayes was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second round of the 2008 NHL Draft, but was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks in 2010. He played in 43 games in his two-plus seasons in Chicago before he was dealt to the Florida Panthers in 2013.
The winger was traded to his hometown Bruins in 2015 in exchange for Reilly Smith, and signed a three-year extension a few days after he was acquired by Boston.
“I’m devastated to learn of the passing of my friend Jimmy Hayes. It was a pleasure getting to know Jimmy, and he was such a joy to be around both on and off the ice,” Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron said of Hayes. “I will always remember his big smile — he was so positive and full of life. I’m going to really miss that. We’ve lost a great person.”
A statement from Boston Bruins Captain Patrice Bergeron: pic.twitter.com/SUG5AvPj9Y
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) August 23, 2021
I was devastated to learn of Jimmy’s passing this morning. My condolences are with his wife Kristen, his two young boys and the rest of his family and friends in Boston. The hockey community has lost a tremendous person and friend. I’ll greatly miss his wonderful sense of humor… pic.twitter.com/YacQcv9nt2
— Shawn Thornton FDN (@ThorntonFDN) August 23, 2021
After scoring 13 goals and dishing out 16 assists in his first season in Boston, Hayes struggled in his second year and turned in a career-worst two goals and three assists over 58 games. The Bruins bought the winger out of his final year of his contract following the 2017 season. Hayes played 33 games for the New Jersey Devils in 2017-18, and most recently played for the AHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2018-19.
Boston College Hockey is heartbroken over the passing of Jimmy Hayes. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the entire Hayes family. pic.twitter.com/2nL59U6Fgs
— BC Hockey (@BCHockey) August 23, 2021
Hayes comes from a family of hockey players, with his younger brother, Kevin, currently a member of the Philadelphia Flyers.