Rangers captain Chris Drury is honoring Hockey Fights Cancer month by playing October games with a special pink knob on the end of his stick.
|The knob of Chris Drury's stick might not always be visible, but the Rangers captain is hoping it will help raise awareness for Hockey Fights Cancer. |
Prior to the season, the pink knobs' manufacturer offered them to Rangers equipment manager Acacio Marques in case any Rangers were interested in using them for Hockey Fights Cancer month. As soon as Drury learned about the knobs, he asked Marques if he could use them.
The Hockey Fights Cancer foundation was established in 1998 -- the same year Drury entered the NHL. It has raised more than $10.5 million to support national and local cancer research institutions, children’s Hospitals, player charities and local cancer organizations.
The knobs are one of the many ways hockey players are able to show support for cancer victims and cancer research. The NHL has also unveiled a line of Hockey Fights Cancer neckties, which are worn by coaches during games and later auctioned off for charity.
Drury said he has participated in Hockey Fights Cancer cause over the past years by using pink sticks in warm-ups and once even playing an entire game with a pink stick, similar to what Major League Baseball players have done with pink bats to help raise awareness among fans in that sport. Drury, an avid baseball fan and former Little League champion, mentioned the MLB initiative as something he thought about when deciding to use the pink knob.
"Pink isn't a color you normally associate with the NHL," said Drury. "But raising awareness is obviously a good thing."
Drury said getting on board with the league's cancer initiative means a lot to him, because he has had friends and family members who have battled the illness.
"There's probably nobody in this country who hasn't been affected by cancer in one way or another," Drury said.
All Rangers players are supporting the cancer-awareness cause by wearing the Hockey Fights Cancer emblem on their helmets, and Drury hopes the knobs will also catch on with his teammates.
“We've all got the stickers on our helmets, but I hope more guys might do this, too," said Drury.
The knobs might even be bringing Drury a bit of luck. He has used them for each of the past two home victories over Anaheim on Sunday and Toronto on Monday. In the 7-2 win over the Leafs, Drury had two assists -- snapping a three-game scoring drought.