Russia and the world’s top ice hockey officials and players were united in their reactions to the plane crash in Central Russia, which claimed the lives of almost the whole squad of Lokomotiv Yaroslavl, one of the KHL Western Conference leaders.
“This is an irretrievable loss,” said the head of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation, Vladislav Tretyak. “I still can’t believe what has happened. Our hockey has lost remarkable players and couches. This is a horrible tragedy in the history of the Russian sport. I express my condolences to the families and friends of the dead, as well as to all hockey fans.”
“It’s hard to speak minutes after such an awful tragedy,” said legendary Soviet player and CSKA president Vyacheslav Fetisov. “We must support the team and its supporters. We need to think over how to re-establish the club in Yaroslavl. Perhaps we could make a new round of the draft. The NHL has seen such examples when new teams were created.”
“I’m simply shocked by the news,” NHL star Alexander Ovechkin wrote in his Twitter. “Rest in peace!”
While another NHL star Jonathan Toews, commenting on the shocking news for the Toronto Sun, said: “This is the worst summer in the history of hockey.”