RALEIGH, NC – Jim Rutherford, President and General Manager of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes, today issued the following statement about the plane crash in Russia, which took the lives of former Hurricanes player Josef Vasicek and former Hartford Whaler Brad McCrimmon, among other members of Lokomotiv of the Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).
“We are deeply saddened to learn of today’s tragedy in Russia,” said Rutherford. “Josef was an key part of the Hurricanes for six years, helping us achieve some of our greatest successes. More importantly, he was a great teammate on and off the ice, and was respected as a person as well as a player.
“Brad McCrimmon was a member of our team while we were still in Hartford, and was well-liked by all who came in contact with him. His presence in the hockey community will be greatly missed.
“Our thoughts and prayers go to the Vasicek and McCrimmon families, and the loved ones of all of today’s victims.”
Vasicek, 30, was about to begin his fourth season in the KHL with Lokomotiv. He finished his NHL career with 77 goals and 106 assists (183 points) in 460 career games with Carolina, Nashville and the New York Islanders. In 341 games with the Hurricanes, he had 57 goals, 78 assists (135 points) and 229 penalty minutes. Vasicek skated in 37 Stanley Cup playoff games with Carolina, earning five goals and two assists (7 points). He was a member of the Hurricanes’ Eastern Conference championship teams in 2002 and 2006, and has his name on the Stanley Cup for the team’s 2006 title.
McCrimmon, 52, was about to begin his first season as head coach of Lokomotiv. In 156 games with the Whalers from 1993-96, McCrimmon totaled four goals, 12 assists (16 points) and 176 penalty minutes.