The Cold War

Russia's Kontinental Hockey League refuses to let tragedy derail mission

Updated: October 19, 2011, 10:52 AM ET
By Brett Forrest | ESPN The Magazine

This story appears in the Oct. 31 issue of ESPN The Magazine.

FOR CASUAL SPORTS FANS, news of the plane crash that killed 36 members of the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl hockey team last month was a grisly introduction to Russia's Kontinental Hockey League. The NHL, on the other hand, knows the league well. It's been keeping a close watch lately, as the KHL is mounting the first challenge to its control over professional hockey since the World Hockey Association folded in 1979.

The ...

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