Hockey's devastating summer

I don't even know where to begin.  If there has been a worse year for the hockey world, I don't want anyone to tell me about it; because after what has just happened I can't even imagine it.

This morning a plane crashed in Russia.  The plane was carrying Lokomotiv Yaroslavl of the KHL to Minsk for their first game of the year.  Virtually the entire roster of the team was killed in the crash, with only one player surviving.  Former NHL players on the team include Pavol Demitra, Ruslan Salei, and Josef Vasicek. All have been killed.

I'm not going to go more into it.  More up to date news is all over the internet, and this should be the last place you are looking for it.  But this brings to a close an absolutely tragic summer for the hockey world.  So far as I can tell, this is the single worst disaster to ever hit a sports team by the sheer number of casualties, and it happened to a hockey community already devastated by three other premature deaths.

Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien, and Wade Belak all died this summer, now this.  Hockey can't take any more of this kind of thing.  The season is just around the corner, and we are talking more about what and who has been lost instead of being excited for the coming season.  It is really hard to process the pain in the hockey community right now.  I can't even imagine it, and I hope that starting the season soon will help with the grieving process for players like Marian Gaborik, who has often said that Pavol Demitra and Derek Boogaard were among his closes friends.  Hopefully starting the season will be good for people like him, and help them with the grieving process.

I don't know what we did to anger the hockey gods, but it has to stop, and now. We can't take much more of this.  We need the season to start so we can focus on the good, which is watching the sport that we love.  It is what Boogaard, Rypien, Belak, and the players of Lokomotiv Yaroslavl would have wanted.