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Lokomotiv and the KHL, A Year Later

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Today marks one year since the darkest day in the history of the sport of hockey. The entire Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team, its coaching staff, video crew, and medical/training staff were killed along with the pilots and crew save for flight engineer Alexander Sizov, was killed in a plane crash upon takeoff for the team's opening game of the 2011-12 season. One player, Alexander Galimov, initially survived the crash but succumbed to his injuries five days later. In total, 44 people were killed in the crash that brought international attention to the state of Russian commercial aircraft.

It halted the start of the KHL season, as the first game of the season was postponed as the news of the crash arrived mid-game. The season's start was delayed across the league for over a week.

Last year, I provided a list of the deceased from the Lokomotiv team. Today, I'm going to provide a different list, one of the roster that suited up with the Lokomotiv logo on their chests at Arena 2000 in Yaroslavl, the scene of the incredibly emotional memorials one year ago. They won in the club's return to the KHL, a 5-2 win over Sibir Novosibirsk.

# Player Pos. Nation
20 Vitaly Kolesnik G Kz_medium
66 Nikita Lozhkin G Ru_medium
27 Staffan Kronwall D Se_medium
18 Sami Lepisto D Fi_medium
5 Vitaly Vishnevski D Ru_medium
63 Maxim Kondratiev D Ru_medium
36 Mark Flood D Ca_medium
33 Mikhail Pashnin D Ru_medium
44 Yegor Yakovlev D Ru_medium
22 Alexander Chernikov F Ru_medium
71 Alexei Kalyuzhny C By_medium
40 Danill Apalkov C Ru_medium
19 Mikelis Redlihs RW Lv_medium
50 Alexei Kruchinin C Ru_medium
26 Yury Petrov F Ru_medium
29 Yegor Averin LW Ru_medium
88 Roman Lyuduchin RW Ru_medium
9 Niklas Hagman LW Fi_medium
80 Dmitry Maltsev F Ru_medium
16 Sergei Plotnikov F Ru_medium
91 Oleg Yashin LW Ru_medium
98 Vladislav Kartayev C Ru_medium

Scratches included G Curtis Sanford (CAN), D Andrei Konev, D Yevgeni Korolyov, F Emil Galimov (RUS), F Viktor Kozlov (RUS), and F Maxim Trunyov (RUS).

The Head Coach is Tom Rowe, who was the assistant coach of the Carolina Hurricanes the past four years. Former NHL players Dmitry Yushkevich and Nikolai Borschevsky are his assistants, with Jorma Valtonen as the goaltending coach.

Side note: In the post-game press conference, one of the first questions Tom Rowe was asked was why he started Kolesnik over Sanford. It's safe to say that the media in Yaroslavl is ready to cover hockey games, stirring up goaltender controversies instead of talking about the plane crash.