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Rangers Prospect Alexei Cherepanov Dies

Oct 13, 2008 – 3:48 PM
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Eric McErlain

Eric McErlain %BloggerTitle%

According to reports out of Russia that have been confirmed for me by Dmitry Chesnokov of Sovetsky Sport, New York Rangers prospect Alexei Cherepanov, currently playing for Avangard Omsk in the Kontinental Hockey League, has died.

Piecing together multiple translations with Chesnokov's help, I've been able to confirm the following sequence of events:

In the 18th minute of the third period of Avangard Omsk's game against Chekhov Vityaz, Cherepanov collided with Jaromir Jagr during a line change. Once Cherepanov got to the bench, he collapsed, and team doctors determined that his heart had stopped and immediately began attempts to revive him.

Cherepanov was then transported to an unnamed hospital in Moscow where doctors attempted to revive him for about an hour before he was declared dead of cardiac arrest at 22:55 local time/2:55 p.m. U.S. EDT.

The first English language report that I saw came from the hockey blog Alex Ovetjkin by way of Japers' Rink. Apparently, Russian hockey fans are already asking why a portable defibrillator like the one that saved the life of Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jiri Fischer wasn't available to help save Cherepanov.

The Rangers have issued the following statement:
"We are extremely saddened by the tragic passing of Alexei," said Sather. "On behalf of the New York Rangers organization, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to his family. Alexei was an intelligent, energetic young man, with tremendous talent and an extremely bright future."
Our condolences to Cherepanov's family and friends.
Filed under: Sports