Mother of dead soldier objects to lake being named after Jonathan Toews

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When we first heard that the Province of Manitoba would name one of its many lakes after local star Jonathan Toews on July 7, it seemed harmless (and amusing) enough.

What we didn’t know was that the region has a tradition of naming lakes after fallen soldiers, a tradition that apparently was infringed upon – at least according to one distressed parent – when Toews was given the honor of having a lake named after him. The Vancouver Sun captures the disapproval of Shirley Seggie, whose son Michael was killed in Afghanistan in 2008.

Among those complaining that the honour is undeserved is the mother of a soldier killed in Afghanistan.

“While it is commendable that Jonathan Toews has accomplished so much in his short life thus far, I feel it is a travesty he has had a lake named after him,” said Shirley Seggie.

“Our son Cpl. Michael James Alexander Seggie was killed in action in 2008 . . . thus far there has been no lake named after him despite a program that is in place to name lakes after military personnel killed in action.”

The program Seggie mentions is Manitoba’s own Commemorative Names Project, a program solely dedicated to naming geographic features after fallen soldiers. As it turns out Seggie’s son will be one of the five soldiers the province will honour this November.

“Every Manitoban soldier who is killed in battle is automatically nominated for a geographic fixture,” said MacAulay. “But under a national policy there is a mandated three-year wait period before we can go about naming.”

Follow the link to read a little bit more about the minute details of the case, as it seems like it might be more of an issue of bureaucracy as it is about anything else, as Puck Daddy’s Greg Wyshynski mentions in his story about the controversy.

There aren’t many sports writers who avoid falling into the habit of calling an athlete a “warrior” for risking an elbow to the head to score a goal or [insert other dangerous sports scenario]. It’s an understandable habit, but perhaps this is another reminder that we take sports a bit too seriously.

Luckily, Seggie’s son will receive that honor in November, so it seems like this situation won’t get too ugly.

Blackhawks’ Boris Katchouk sidelined by ankle sprain

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CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced.

The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.

The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.

The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.

Ducks’ Urho Vaakanainen crashes into boards, leaves on stretcher

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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.

The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.

The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.

Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.

The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.

Lightning donate $2 million to Hurricane Ian relief efforts

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TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.

The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.

“This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”

Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.

Maple Leafs sign defenseman Rasmus Sandin to 2-year deal

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TORONTO — Rasmus Sandin has signed a two-year, $2.8 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club announced on Thursday.

The 22-year-old from Sweden was the 29th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Sandin had 16 points in 51 games with Toronto last season. He’s played in 88 career regular-season games, with six goals and 22 assists, and has one goal in five playoff games.

“Got a great set of tools,” fellow defenseman Jake Muzzin said. “With experience, I think they’re only going to get better.”

The signing comes as the Leafs’ blueliners been hit hard by injuries. Muzzin has been dealing with a back issue, and Timothy Liljegren recently had surgery for a hernia.

Toronto then lost Jamie Benn (groin) and Carl Dahlstrom (shoulder) in Wednesday’s 3-0 preseason victory over the Montreal Canadiens, pressing forwards Calle Jarnkrok and Alexander Kerfoot into defensive roles for two periods.