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NHL Mourns Death Of Wade Belak, 3rd NHL Player To Die Since May

NHL mourns the death of Wade Belak, the 3rd NHL player and enforcer to die since May.

NHL mourns the death of Wade Belak, the 3rd NHL player and enforcer to die since May.

On Wednesday the body of Wade Belak who was a popular National Hockey League forward and defenceman, was found dead in a hotel room in Toronto, Canada.

Belak was 35 years old, and was a 6 foot 5 inch player weighing 230 pounds and had played with five different NHL teams in his hockey career, namely the Colorado Avalanche, Calgary Flames, Toronto Maple Leafs, Florida Panthers and, most recently, the Nashville Predators.  before he retiring in April.

His latest venture was to have been as a reporter for Nashville television broadcasts starting this season, and he was said to be happy at the prospects. Police have said that foul play is not suspected.

This untimely death follows 2 others since May when the former New York Rangers enforcer Derek Boogard, 28, was found dead in his home of an accidental drug and alcohol overdose, and then ex-Vancouver Canuck Rick Rypien who was found dead in August in Alberta at his home. Rypien’s death is suspected to be a suicide, and although it has not actually been reported as such, police have said it is not suspicious, but Rypien, 27, was known to have suffered from depression for the last ten years.

What is perhaps so disconcerting about the deaths of these young men is that all three players were known as enforcers in the NHL, stepping up to fight if other players were mistreated by the opposing team. All three were respected in their teams and the NHL, and all three will be sadly missed.

Meanwhile, the NHL will be looking into these deaths to see what they can learn from them to help others in the league and those newly retired from the hockey scene.

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Keith is a multi-sport skills and fitness coach with more than 30 years sports and coaching experience; with a holistic view of health, he has also been a leader in applying plyometrics to youth teams.

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