Michael Ryder

Michael Ryder’s brother Daniel found not guilty of holding up a convenience store

Rick Rypien’s death prompted the Vancouver Canucks to try to plan a tough battle against depression and with good reason: the former tough guy is far from the only hockey player to struggle with such demons. Daniel Ryder ranks as an ex-NHL prospect whose issues held him back to the point that he went from being a promising player to someone who ended up in a psychiatric hospital after turning himself in amid accusations of holding up a convenience store.

The sad story of the brother of former Boston Bruins and current Dallas Stars sniper Michael Ryder (pictured) might take at least a small step in a positive direction, as CBC News reports that Daniel was found not guilty for that robbery today. In total, the CBC reports that he was cleared of three charges: theft, robbery with violence and wearing a disguise.

It seems like the case came down to a lack of concrete evidence of Daniel’s guilt, according to the judge’s decision. The Packet provides a few more strange details from the trial and the court’s decision.

Judge Patrick Kennedy cleared the former hockey star on all charges. Kennedy took almost two hours to read his decision, indicating there was a high degree of evidence pointing to Ryder’s opportunity to commit the offence. However, he said, the burden of proof was not met by the Crown.

The trial was based around a video of the robbery and circumstantial evidence of Ryder’s activities on the night of the robbery. Nobody could positively identify the suspect in the video, and there was no forensic evidence linking Ryder to the scene of the crime. Ryder’s behaviour at the time was unusual which, according to testimony in court, was due in part to mental illness that was diagnosed after the robbery.

Kennedy said the evidence “does not draw the net tightly enough around the accused.”

Hopefully Daniel Ryder is in the process of getting the help he needs to turn his life around, even if hockey left the picture quite a while ago.

Kassian sent to hospital after being involved in car accident

Scott Darling, Zack Kassian

Montreal Canadiens winger Zack Kassian was involved in a car accident early Sunday morning.

According to the Montreal Gazette, Kassian was a passenger in the vehicle that crashed into a tree.

The SUV was being driven by a 20-year-old female at the time of the accident.

Montreal police confirmed that speed didn’t play a factor in the collision, but alcohol may have.

The Canadiens have since confirmed the incident took place and have also mentioned that Kassian was taken to hospital.

A club official described his injuries as being “minor”.

“(Kassian) was all bloodied up and stuff. He was in a daze,” said Steve Petrenko, a resident of the street on which the accident took place. “He had a hard time walking, and he almost took a fall.”

This story will be updated when more information is made available.

Habs and Fleischmann agree on one-year deal

Tomas Fleischmann,
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The Montreal Canadiens announced that they have signed Tomas Fleischmann to a one-year contract.

According to TVA Sports, the deal is worth $750,000.

The 31-year-old was invited to camp on a professional tryout, but his preseason performance showed that he could still contribute at the NHL level.

Fleischmann found instant chemistry with new linemates David Desharnais and Dale Weise, and it looks like the trio will open the regular season as Montreal’s third line.

The veteran winger started  last season with Florida, but was traded to Anaheim on Feb. 28. He had a hard time cracking the Duck’s lineup and was a healthy scratch in most of their playoff games last spring.

Fleischmann scored eight goals and 27 points in 66 games last season.