Throughout the 2017-18 hockey season, the NHL and NHLPA have highlighted Hockey Fights Cancer, a joint initiative that unites the hockey community in support of cancer patients and their families. And for the 2018 AHL All-Star Classic, the league and their host, the Utica Comets, look to do the same
During the nationally televised two-day event at the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica, New York, the AHL, in conjunction with the Comets’ Save of the Day Foundation, will aim to raise money for Hockey Fights Cancer through an array of channels. The AHL will hold a raffle for a game-used Reid Boucher AHL All-Star jersey and an All-Star jersey signed by the entire Eastern Conference All Star team in the concourse during both the Skills Competition and the All-Star Challenge, with all proceeds benefitting Hockey Fights Cancer.
In addition, the Save of the Day Foundation, the Utica Comets’ charitable foundation, will donate their half of the 50/50 to Hockey Fights Cancer. The 50/50 at the Adirondack Bank Center during Comets games is highly successful, and with a two-day carryover pot, Save of the Day hopes to raise awareness for Hockey Fights cancer with their donation. Save of the Day is currently in its 15th year of existence, with over $2 million dollars donated back to local charities since its inception.
Finally, to highlight the initiative on a global scale, during the All-Star Challenge on Monday night, between the third and fourth games, all fans in attendance, as well as players, coaches, trainers, and staff members, will be encouraged to take a Hockey Fights Cancer card upon ingress and write in the name of someone they know who has battled cancer. All at once, the entire Adirondack Bank Center will raise their cards, with players standing on the blue line, to exemplify solidarity and support for those throughout the world who are or have been affected by cancer. Hockey Fights Cancer cards are free of charge and will be available at each entrance to the Adirondack Bank Center. There will also be dedicated tables in the concourse for attendees to fill out their cards.
“The AHL is proud to support the wonderful efforts led by Hockey Fights Cancer,” said Chris Nikolis, EVP, Marketing for the AHL. “We greatly value our partnership with the NHL and are thrilled to use our showcase event to raise money and awareness in the fight against cancer.”
“It’s an honor to be part of such a great cause, especially when it relates to a disease that affects so many people,” said Comets President Robert Esche. “I look forward to the special moment when everyone is able to lift their cards in unison today at the Adirondack Bank Center.”
Hockey Fights Cancer was founded in 1998 and has since raised over $18 million dollars to aid in cancer research.