2 former Blackhawks killed in Russian plane crash

September 7, 2011 (CHICAGO)

Former Blackhawks defenseman Alexander Karpovtsev and center Igor Korolev, both 41-year-old natives of Moscow, were assistant coaches for the Lokomotiv hockey team in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League.

The team's plane crashed into a riverbank shortly after taking off Wednesday.

The team was heading to Belarus to play in the opening game of the Russian hockey season.

Authorities say only two people -- one player and a crew member -- survived the crash.

The Chicago Blackhawks released the following statement Wednesday:

"We stand together with the entire KHL, NHL and hockey world in mourning today's tragic news concerning the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl hockey team.

"The tragedy effects the Chicago Blackhawks family directly as we mourn the losses of Alexander Karpovtsev and Igor Korolev, two players who spent time with our organization and that our fans know well.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl organization."

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