To celebrate the start of the 2009-10 season, the National Hockey League and the National Hockey League Players' Association will host their annual Hockey Fights Cancer
Awareness Month in October. The League-wide initiative includes numerous activities that involve all 30 clubs, players, management and fans, as well as the creation of Hockey Fights Cancer
-themed merchandise -- all with the goal of raising awareness and funds for this important cause.
Each NHL club will designate one October home game as its Hockey Fights Cancer
Awareness Night. The teams will collaborate with local and national cancer organizations to promote cancer awareness and raise funds for hockey's most important fight. Events will include on-ice presentations, 50/50 raffles, promotional giveaways, contests and discount ticket offers. Arena suites and tickets will be donated to children's hospitals and cancer-affiliated programs, and young patients will be involved with in-game opportunities -- including rides on the ice resurfacer, puck drops, radio booth visits and player meet-and-greets. There also will be online, live and silent auctions of signed items, including helmets, sticks, jerseys and other team merchandise. Several clubs will continue to promote awareness by participating in local hospital visits and fundraising runs and walks.
Last year's initiative raised more than $600,000 in support of Hockey Fights Cancer
Lavender, which represents awareness for all cancers, is once again the designated color for this year's initiative and will be worn by the hockey community throughout October. Members of the hockey family, including NHL coaches, broadcasters and team personnel, will wear a commemorative Hockey Fights Cancer
tie during games in October. The lavender-striped tie features an embroidered Hockey Fights Cancer
logo and is manufactured by Thomas Direct Sales Inc. Also, in support of this initiative, all NHL players will wear a Hockey Fights Cancer
decal on their helmets during all regular-season games in October.
Additional one-of-a-kind apparel has been created to support Hockey Fights Cancer
-- including a lavender ladies' scarf by Thomas Direct Sales that features a Hockey Fights Cancer
symbol and puck pattern throughout and the Hockey Fights Cancer
logo at two ends. Ladies' and men's Hockey Fights Cancer
team-specific caps also will be available. The ladies' lavender garment-washed cap, designed by New Era, features a team logo on the front and an embroidered Hockey Fights Cancer
logo on the side. The men's cap is Reebok's official 2009-10 Draft Day cap with the Hockey Fights Cancer
embroidered patch on the side.
New to this year's collection of merchandise is the NHL Dream Capsule by UPI Marketing and Hockey Fights Cancer
men's & ladies T-shirts by Old Time Sports Inc. The NHL Dream Capsule is an interactive fashion accessory which enables the owner to create his or her goals and dreams, write down those dreams, insert them into the NHL Dream Capsule and wear the dreams on a daily basis. Each NHL Dream Capsule is team-branded and can be worn as a necklace or used as a keychain. The Old Time Sports T-shirts feature distressed team specific and Hockey Fights Cancer
To further promote this initiative, the NHLPA and the NHL, together with Getty Images, NHL Images and Greystone Books, will publish Reflections 2009 -- The NHL Hockey Year In Photographs. The third of an annual visual celebration series, the book chronicles the highlights and candid, behind-the-scenes images from the 2008-09 NHL season. Copies of the book, autographed by team captains, will be auctioned on nhl.com and nhlpa.com during October.
Hockey fans will be able to purchase the commemorative tie, scarf, caps, book, t-shirts and NHL Dream Capsules at shop.nhl.com, team stores and the NHL Powered by Reebok store in New York. In addition, the Dream Capsule will be sold exclusively at Loblaws Stores in Canada. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of all these products will benefit Hockey Fights Cancer
"Through Hockey Fights Cancer
the NHL family continues to build upon our long-standing tradition of addressing important social issues in North America and around the world," said Kenneth Martin
, Jr., NHL Vice President of Community Affairs. "Collectively we have raised over $10 million dollars to support cancer research, and remain committed to helping find a cure for cancer. We encourage our fans, teams and players to join us in this fight, and demonstrate that our Biggest Assist Happens Off the Ice."
"The players and the entire hockey community continue to show dedication to this cause by joining forces in a powerful manner through Hockey Fights Cancer
, seeking out a cure to an illness that unfortunately has impacted us all," said Devin Smith, the NHLPA's Director of Marketing & Community Relations. "We anticipate the month of October being very successful in furthering our efforts to raise awareness."
The schedule of Hockey Fights Cancer
Dallas @ Calgary
Florida @ Carolina
NY Islanders @ Boston
Washington @ Detroit
Minnesota @ San Jose
Pittsburgh @ Toronto
Nashville @ Dallas
Tampa Bay @ Ottawa
Philadelphia @ Florida
Los Angeles @ Columbus
St. Louis @ Pittsburgh
Dallas @ Los Angeles
Detroit @ Phoenix
Carolina @ Colorado
Minnesota @ St. Louis
Columbus @ Anaheim
San Jose @ Atlanta
Nashville @ Chicago
NY Rangers @ Montreal
Florida @ Philadelphia
Dallas @ St. Louis
Edmonton @ Vancouver
Phoenix @ NY Rangers
Philadelphia @ Washington
NY Rangers @ NY Islanders
Buffalo @ NJ Devils
Detroit @ Edmonton
Ottawa @ Tampa Bay
Chicago @ Nashville
Toronto @ Buffalo
NY Rangers @ Minnesota