The month of November is Hockey Fights Cancer month across the NHL. The Hockey Fights Cancer initiative was founded in 1998 by the National Hockey League® and the National Hockey League Players’ Association. Hockey Fights Cancer™(HFC) unites the hockey community in support of cancer patients and their families. Throughout the month, the entire hockey community comes together to inspire hope and courage for those who are living with, going through, and moving past cancer.
The NHL Hockey Fights Cancer Ambassador for the 2019-20 season is NHL Alumni member Eddie Olczyk, who has been cancer-free since March of 2018. Eddie has been a constant source of inspiration for us all and spoke about his courageous battle with colon cancer at our 2018 NHL Alumni Awards Gala Celebration where he received our Ace Bailey ‘Award of Courage’. Eddie has done much to bring awareness to colon cancer and he’ll continue to do so as the NHL Hockey Fights Cancer Ambassador.
Throughout the month, you will see current NHL players wearing special Hockey Fights Cancer jerseys and lavender stick tape during warmups. During these Hockey Fights Cancer nights, you will also see lavender dasher boards (lavender representing all cancers), and coaches and broadcasters will be wearing HFC ties. Players former and present, friends, families and staff all take part in writing down what or who they are fighting for on “I Fight For” signs. Whether it’s a loved one, a neighbour, or just a cure, it’s a way to show you are with them during the fight.
Over the course of 21 years since its inception, the Hockey Fights Cancer initiative has raised and donated over 20 million dollars. As a result, some essential services are able to be funded like lodging, transportation, and round the clock support for patients and families alike.