Maple Leafs’ Sparks shares heartfelt message after Orlando shootings

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Plenty of people are horrified by the mass shooting in Orlando, but those events hit especially close to home for Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Garret Sparks.

As Sparks has been pursuing his career going up and down the Maple Leafs’ depth chart, he’s spent parts of multiple seasons with the ECHL’s Orlando Solar Bears. He’s played chunks of seasons with them since 2013-14.

Sparks is also an American-born player, hailing from Illinois.

With all of that in mind, it’s no surprise how personally Sparks took the news.

He went further, too, speaking his mind about the issue in a follow-up tweet:

Again, Sparks wasn’t alone in sharing his thoughts, with former NHL defenseman Ryan Whitney also being very candid.

Plenty of other teams and players weighed in, albeit without the controversy, including the Florida Panthers and Tampa Bay Lightning:

Tyler Johnson also shared his condolences.

For more on that situation, follow NBC News’ coverage. (Puck Daddy also addressed Sparks’ comments.)