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NHL teams pay tribute to military service

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St. Louis Blues goaltender Brian Elliott wore a special mask Tuesday for the game against the Buffalo Sabres at Scottrade Center, one of many tributes to the military being performed by teams and players across the NHL this week.

Tuesday, Nov. 11 was Veterans Day in America and Remembrance Day in Canada. For a gallery of photos from around the League, CLICK HERE.
(Photo: Scott Rovak/NHLI)

The mask, adorned with images of soldiers, the stars and stripes of the American flag, and the maple leaf of the Canadian flag, was given to Elliott after practice Monday by Charles Rohde, 92, a World War II veteran. Rohde participated in the pregame ceremony, next to Elliott.

"It's definitely an honor getting [the mask] from Mr. Rohde, someone that's been through something that we've only read [about] in books," Elliott told the Blues website. "He's a hero. It's an honor to be in his presence, for sure."

Tuesday is Veterans Day in America and Remembrance Day in Canada. Like the Blues, teams across the NHL have been and will be paying tribute with Military Appreciation nights.

The Anaheim Ducks wore camouflage jerseys during the warm-up Sunday against the Vancouver Canucks.

The Boston Bruins honored the memory of United States Army Spc. Brian Arsenault of Northborough, Mass., prior to their game Monday against the New Jersey Devils. Family members of Arsenault, who was killed in Afghanistan in September, received an ovation from the crowd at TD Garden as they walked out to center ice to take part in the ceremonial puck drop.

The Montreal Canadiens had a bagpiper and five flag bearers, all members of the military, on the ice prior to their game against the Winnipeg Jets for "O Canada," which was sung solely by the fans. Canadiens owner Geoff Molson invited 29 members of the military to watch the game in a private suite.

The New York Islanders wore camouflage jerseys during warm-ups Tuesday against the Colorado Avalanche at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Four members of the USO Show Troupe performed the national anthem, and the Para Rescue Team from the 106th Rescue Wing in Hampton Bays, N.Y., rappelled from the scoreboard with the American flag.

Heisman Trophy winner and former Army general Pete Dawkins participated in a ceremonial faceoff prior to the Florida Panthers hosting the San Jose Sharks.

The Edmonton Oliers, along with other Canadian teams, wore helmets with a decal of the red, remembrance poppy.

The Devils, New York Rangers and Washington Capitals had members of the military sing "The Star-Spangled Banner."

The Nashville Predators are raising money through the sale of mystery pucks and an auction of camouflage jerseys worn during the warm-up Tuesday against the Oilers to support local non-profits which aid veterans and active-duty military.

"We're taking advantage of the fact that we're a professional team and we have a lot of people watching us," Predators general manager David Poile said. "This is a way to tie back into, not only the community, but also your country. It's a small way of showing appreciation, but hopefully it's meaningful and gets more people on board to support these things."

The Minnesota Wild expect more than 1,000 active or retired military members in attendance for their next home game Thursday against the Sabres. The Wild will wear camouflage jerseys during the pregame warm-up and then auction them on Wild.com.

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