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Toronto Maple Leafs

You have to admire Jason Blake

From Tim Wharnsby of the Globe & Mail:

For the first time, Blake discussed in depth what affect the news of being diagnosed with Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML) a few days before the season opener had on him. CML is a rare form of leukemia, and Blake took – and continues to take – medication that effectively combated his condition, but caused him to lose 10 pounds in the first three weeks.

The weight loss was a huge factor in his play because he already is small at 5-foot-10 and 180 pounds. He admitted he lost battles for the puck that he would normally win because he was too light on his feet.

Plus, there was the mental anguish of dealing with the stunning news of being diagnosed with CML.

“When I came to training camp I was so focused and excited, but then was kicked to the curb with some news,” Blake said. “It took me a while to figure it out, that things were going to be OK.”

Read the entire article here.

Reading articles like these helps put the game in the proper perspective for people who don’t realize that in the end, hockey is just a game.