Russian women’s goaltender pays tribute to late Alexei Cherepanov with beautiful mask

Jared Clinton
Maria Sorokina (via Twitter/Andre Ringuette/HHOF Images)

Goaltenders have used mask art to pay tribute to troops, they’ve shown their love for family and friends and in some cases the legends who came before them. For Russia’s Maria Sorokina, her mask for the Women’s World Championship honors the life of Alexei Cherepanov.

Cherepanov, you may recall, was drafted 17th overall by the New York Rangers in the 2007 draft. While playing in the KHL for Avangard Omsk in 2008, Cherepanov tragically passed away at the age of 19. During an October 2008 contest against Vityaz Chekhov, Cherepanov returned to the bench following a shift, collapsed and was later pronounced dead. His death shocked the hockey world. Read more

2018 Olympic hockey format unveiled. Which countries will make it?

Sidney Crosby. (Getty Images)

Olympic hockey will happen in 2018, NHLers or not. At the very least, the tournament will feature the world’s best female players. Will the men’s elite make the trek to PyeongChang, South Korea? We’ll see. Whatever happens, the IIHF is proceeding as if everyone will come to play. It released the respective formats for Olympic men’s and women’s hockey qualification Wednesday. Let’s break down how each field will be determined – under the assumption NHLers play.

Read more

CWHL MVP Rebecca Johnston has had a brilliant past, awaits brighter future

Rebecca Johnston (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)

Her pal Tessa Bonhomme likes to refer to Rebecca Johnston as, “a defenseman’s worst nightmare.” And if this season was any indication, it’s only going to get worse.

That’s because Johnston, who already has two Olympic gold medals around her neck, is about the closest thing you can be to a professional in women’s hockey. Her decision to move full-time to Calgary this season was made on the premise that she would only get better being so close to Hockey Canada’s headquarters and all the training facilities it has to offer women’s players. By day, she works part-time for an insurance company, but aside from that it’s all training and playing. Whether it’s Hockey Canada skills sessions or practices with the Calgary Inferno of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League, there aren’t many days when Johnston isn’t on the ice. Read more

Cam Ward’s five greatest moments, in honor of his 500th game

Ward

Tuesday night, when Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Cam Ward took the ice, he became only the fifth active goaltender to appear in 500 games.

While his career has been tumultuous at times and it appears as though his days in Carolina are numbered, Ward will go down as the greatest goaltender in the history of the club formerly known as the Hartford Whalers. He has suited up in more games, has more wins (by more than 100), has made more saves and has posted more shutouts than any goaltender that has ever stepped between the pipes for the franchise.

It’s only fitting, then, that on this day we count down the five best moments of Ward’s career, all but one of which has come as a member of the club. Read more

Time for star players to step up because NHL prepared to ditch Olympics

Ken Campbell
Sidney Crosby and Henrik Lundqvist (Photo by David E. Klutho /Sports Illustrated/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS – Now is the time for the best players in the NHL to stand up the way they do when the Stanley Cup is on the line. Because if they don’t push the issue on Olympic participation, the NHL will be more than happy to trash the entire concept.

The NHL and NHL Players’ Association announced the details of the 2016 World Cup of Hockey, which will be played in Toronto Sept. 17-Oct. 1, 2016. Both sides spoke of the event in glowing terms and there was much singing from the same songbook. That’s because both sides stand to gain a mother lode of money from a World Cup. The profits for the event are split 50-50 between the NHLPA and the league, meaning they will not be part of Hockey Related Revenues and will have no bearing on the salary cap. Each side is free to take its money and do with it whatever it wants. Read more

Nicklas Backstrom’s PED ordeal ends with settlement, sanity prevails

Nicklas Backstrom  (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)

Almost 11 months after Nicklas Backstrom’s drug scandal ordeal began in Sochi, the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF), the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) have acknowledged what everyone seemed to know all along – that the Washington Capitals center was the victim of an honest, but costly mistake.

And, as a result, he’s getting his wrist slapped and we all move on.

The three bodies issued a joint statement Thursday that they had reached a settlement in the dispute, which was to go to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Read more

Eric Comrie to start for Canada in New Year’s Eve game vs. USA

Ken Campbell
Eric Comrie  (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

BROSSARD, Que. – In something of a mild surprise, Hockey Canada announced that Eric Comrie of the Tri-City Americans will be in goal when Canada and USA meet in the New Year’s Eve game that will decide Group A in the World Junior Championship.

Even though Hockey Canada has expressed confidence in both Comrie and Zach Fucale, it seemed Fucale was the frontrunner for the No. 1 job, given that the Montreal Canadiens prospect played for last year’s team and was the starter in two of Canada’s first three games, allowing only one goal on 40 shots. Comrie, meanwhile, stopped all 17 shots he faced in Canada’s 4-0 win over Germany.

Comrie, the 59th overall selection of the Winnipeg Jets in 2013, has been a standout for Tri-City this season. He is the younger half-brother of former NHLer Mike Comrie. Another older half-brother, Paul, played 15 games for the Edmonton Oilers and Comrie’s younger brother, Ty, is a 17-year-old center for the Tri-City Americans.

More to follow.

Dominik Hasek, Scott Niedermayer headline 2015 IIHF Hall of Fame

Dominik Hasek IIHF HOF featured

Already members of the Hockey Hall of Fame, Scott Niedermayer and Dominik Hasek will enter the IIHF Hall of Fame as part of a seven-member class of 2015.

Other inductees include longtime Czech captain Robert Reichel, Sweden’s Maria Rooth, Fran Rider in the builder category, and Lucio Topatigh, an Italian national rewarded for his play for a non-top hockey nation. Read more