It has been more than a decade since Dominik Hasek ended a historic nine-year run in Buffalo with the Sabres. Even though he hasn't patrolled the Buffalo crease for some time, he's still making a great contribution to the city.
That legacy for Hasek, who won the Hart Trophy twice and the Vezina Trophy a remarkable six times in Buffalo, began with the former goaltender's passion project: Hasek's Heroes. Hasek established the organization in 2001 with a personal donation of $1 million, at that time one of the largest individual donations to a single charity in sports history. Since then, Hasek's Heroes has worked tirelessly to help bring hockey to underprivileged young people around Buffalo, teaching them the sport along with the life lessons that come with it.
"Dominik is still very much a part of the program. Every year he contributes about $50,000 to the program," said Sean Green, the executive director of Hasek's Heroes. "He loves coming back to Buffalo. When he comes back, he wants to make sure he's on the ice with the kids, he wants to meet the parents. He doesn't just come in and say 'that's nice.'"