As sports fans in general (and hockey fans in particular) continue to mourn the tragic plane crash in Russia that claimed 43 lives (including players and coaches from the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl KHL team), many people have named the summer of 2011 as the worst-ever in the history of hockey. And when you consider the sudden deaths of Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak (all within the last four months), it’s hard to disagree. This latest tragedy affects different people across the world for various reasons. Canucks fans are fondly remembering Pavol Demitra, who played here for two seasons and...Click here to read more.
In January I wrote that Russian hockey, by forcing domestic players into the KHL, was ensuring the the league could one day approach, if not equal and surpass, the talent level found in the NHL. Today’s tragic plane crash underscores how that will probably never happen. In his book “King of Russia: A Year in the Russian Superleague,” Dave King talks at length in about the travels of KHL teams – the tough mining towns, the surrounding poverty and the perilous flights teams took between games. It’s a subject matter he’s commented on again in the wake of the accident. There’s lots of...Click here to read more.
I was going to start a series of posts previewing the 2011/2012 Vancouver Canucks today. But in light of this morning’s tragedy in Russia, in which a plane crashed shortly after takeoff, killing members of the KHL team, Lokomotiv, I thought I’d start the series with a look at one of the victims, former Canuck, Pavol Demitra. What we remember: Perhaps one of our most lasting memories of Demitra in Vancouver wasn’t his play as a Canuck, but rather his performance at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He represented 9th-ranked Slovakia, which upset Team Sweden in the quarterfinals and came within...Click here to read more.