‘Going to war’ or ‘going to battle’ are popular phrases in the hockey vernacular.
However, the magnitude of even the fiercest hockey games pale in comparison to the sacrifices made by men and women in the Armed Forces.
On Saturday, the Chicago Blackhawks skated at Soldier Field with members of the USA Warriors Ice Hockey Program.
The program is designed to offer wounded veterans a “recreational, therapeutic experience” through the game of hockey.
“These guys are our heroes,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville told NHL.com.
“It’s an inspiration to see these guys want to come out here and play and do anything they can to have some fun, stay in shape and play something they love. Getting to share it with some pro athletes is special for them, but I think it’s more special for us when we get a chance to show some of our appreciation for what they’ve done for us.”
Added Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews to the Chicago Tribune: “We look up to them. We appreciate everything they’ve done for us and to us they’re the real heroes. To share the ice and have them out for practice with us is a pretty huge honor for the guys.”
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Defenseman Logan Pyett of the Philadelphia Flyers’ AHL affiliate has been diagnosed with a form of cancer and will be out indefinitely.
The team said Friday the 27-year-old Canadian has a sarcoma in his upper leg. Flyers general manager Ron Hextall says the club offers “heartfelt thoughts and prayers.”
Pyett signed a one-year contract with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms after being at the Flyers’ training camp. He was selected by Detroit in the seventh round of the 2006 NHL entry draft. He signed as a free agent with the New York Rangers in 2012 and spent two seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League.
Last night, we passed along news that veteran d-man James Wisniewski — acquired from Carolina at the draft — suffered what looked to be a serious injury just 47 seconds into his ‘Canes debut, and was ruled out for the remainder of the night.
Now, he’s been ruled out for a lot longer than that.
From the club:
Ron Francis, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today announced that defenseman James Wisniewski will undergo surgery on his left knee after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) during Thursday night’s game in Nashville.
Recovery time for the injury is estimated at six months.
This is, obviously, a tough development for both player and club. The ‘Canes were counting on Wisniewski to be a regular contributor on defense this year, and help improve last year’s middle-of-the-pack power play.
Wisniewski, meanwhile, was looking to bounce back from a disappointing ’14-15 campaign. He was shipped out of Columbus at the deadline to Anaheim but never made an impact for the Ducks, failing to see any playoff action as Anaheim made it all the way to the Western Conference final.