The Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens will stage a coordinated tribute at their home games Saturday night to honor the soldiers killed in Monday's attack and Wednesday's shootings in Canada, the NHL announced Friday.
The three teams are all hosting games at 7 p.m. ET. It's unclear exactly what the teams will do, but the Senators said they will hold a moment of silence before their game against the New Jersey Devils and are encouraging fans to wear red to show support for the military.
Senators owner Eugene Melnyk released the following statement.
“As we continue to reflect on the tragic circumstances surrounding the deaths of two our country’s soldiers on Canadian soil, we do so with heavy hearts” said Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk. “But what doesn’t break us, makes us stronger. Today our country stands more united than ever and so does the entire NHL family. We are very pleased to join forces with the Montreal Canadiens and the Toronto Maple Leafs in coordinating a unique and special tribute prior our game on Saturday in honour and recognition of these two brave soldiers, their families and all members of our Canadian military.”
On Monday, a Canadian soldier was killed by a radicalized man in a vehicle attack in the city of St. Jean-sur-Richelieu in Quebec. On Wednesday, in an apparently unconnected attack, a lone gunman shot and killed soldier Nathan Cirillo at the National War Memorial in Ottawa before attacking the Parliament building, where he was killed by police.
Before Tuesday night's game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers in Pittsburgh, fans sang along to "O Canada," the Canadian national anthem, played in honor of those in Ottawa. The Canadian national anthem is not typically played before games between two United States-based teams.
In Canada, the pre-game tributes will be televised by CBC, Sportsnet ONE, City, and TVA Sports, and in the U.S. they will be televised by the NHL Network.
- Ben Estes