Monday, October 12, 2009

October is Hockey Fights Cancer Month

When the Detroit Red wings hosted the Caps at JLA on Saturday night, several players commemorated the team's third Annual Breast Cancer Awareness night by wrapping their pre-game warmup sticks in pink tape. These sticks will later be auctioned off to raise funds for this much-deserving cause. Their coaching staff also wore the trademark Hockey Fights Cancer lavender ties to support the League's unified effort in raising cancer awareness.

The Capitals are also participating in their own inititatives in partnership with the NHL to educate the community about cancer and to raise vital funds for research in hopes to one day eradicate the disease. This year the Capitals are partnering with ZERO – The Project to End Prostate Cancer. Prostate cancer is the most common non-skin cancer in America, affecting one of six men. This year alone nearly 200,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, and more than 27,000 men will die from the disease. However, if caught early enough, there is a nearly 100 percent survival rate for prostate cancer.

Caps players, team personnel and front office staff will actively participate in the initiative. Players’ helmets will feature a Hockey Fights Cancer decal – lavender in color, representing all forms of cancer – throughout the month. You'll also see Gabby and the rest of the coaching staff support the cause by sporting commemorative Hockey Fights Cancer ties.

During home games on Oct. 17 and 27, the Caps will host a player-worn autographed practice jersey auction. The jerseys will feature the player’ names and numbers screened in blue, the color representing prostate cancer, in addition to a Hockey Fights Cancer patch on the front. Twelve jerseys will be auctioned off each night, and all money raised will be donated to ZERO – The Project to End Prostate Cancer. There will also be an informational ZERO – The Project to End Prostate Cancer table at each of the games.

Hockey Fights Cancer Night highlights the Hockey Fights Cancer Awareness Month schedule. On Oct. 27, Caps fans that have battled, beaten, helped treat or been personally touched by prostate cancer will be honored in an on-ice ceremony prior to that night’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers. The participants will wear light blue T-shirts with the Caps logo on the front, the Hockey Fights Cancer logo on the back and the ZERO – The Project to End Prostate Cancer logo on the sleeve. Capitals players will also take part in the ceremony.

ZERO will have its mobile screening vehicle parked at Verizon Center for free prostate cancer screening for fans from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Oct. 27. Early detection is critical, so the Capitals are urging fans to be screened. No appointments are necessary with the screening taking less than 30 minutes and consisting of a simple blood test and an optional physical exam.

As the Caps take part, fans will also be encouraged to join the fight. Commemorative ties, ladies’ scarves, men’s and ladies’ caps and the book Reflections 2009—The NHL Hockey Year in Photographs will be on sale at the team store at the Verizon Center and at Hockey Mom has purchased this book every year it has been available (note to self: makes a great holiday gift for all the hockey fans in your world) and I can attest that the photos are incredible! In addition, there will be an online auction of autographed and other Hockey Fights Cancer memorabilia. A portion of all proceeds will benefit the Hockey Fights Cancer initiative. Fans are also encouraged to join the fight by calling (800) 540-6500 or logging on to

HM hopes all of you great fans out there have a chance to participate in these special events and join the Capitals to support this worthy cause and celebrate the true fighters who have survived, are currently battling or are working towards a cure for cancer.

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