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September 07, 2011

Remembering Karlis Skrastins

Not too many people can say this, but Karlis Skrastins was one of my favorite NHL players.

I have always had a soft spot for underrated players, and I often felt the Latvian was one of the NHL's best kept secrets in his time. Over a 12 year NHL career he was a hard working, unheralded defensive defenseman. He was noted for his shot blocking, and for his durability.  In fact, he broke Tim Horton's NHL record for consecutive games played by a defenseman, playing 495 games in a row.

In total he played 832 NHL games, most notably with Nashville and Colorado, but also with Florida and Dallas. He just left the NHL in 2011, joining the doomed team in Yaroslavl, Russia. On the team's first road trip of the 2011-12 season, a plane crashed claimed the lives of all but one of the members of the team.

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