AP Photo/Mel Evans Brad Richards (left) lines up with Henrik Lundqvist and Aaron Asham.
# sports relief
NHL stars forget lock-out woes to compete in Hurricane Sandy fundraiser
Over 30 of North America’s finest ice hockey talents combined for heavy checks and generous cheques.

NHL STARS PACKED their lock-out worries away for one night to take part in a fundraiser in aid of the Hurricane Sandy relief project.

Operation Hat Trick took place at the famed Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey last night.

All proceeds from the sporting event will go directly to the Empire State Relief Fund, the New Jersey Hurricane Relief Fund.

Funds will also be given to the American Red Cross, which is aiding New York and New Jersey families affected by the hurricane that devastated the eastern coast of the United States in October.

Brad Richards of the Rangers joined Flyers forward Scott Hartnell, with the help of Caesars Atlantic City, to stage the event.

Richards and Hartnell served as captains of the team teams that featured NHL stars such as Steve Stamkos, Bobby Ryan, PK Suban and Martin Broduer.

Team Richards emerged from the friendly contest as 10-6 winners.

Richards said, “We are all overwhelmed by the damage and destruction caused to our area by Hurricane Sandy, and as professional hockey players we wanted to come together to help those who were victimised.”

Stamkos, the league’s leading goalscorer last season, missed two penalty shots in the exhibition match and did not please one camera-wielding fan.

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The NHL lock-out is now in its 68th day and the All-Star weekend in December is another seasonal fixture that has been cut due to the impasse over dividing money between franchise owners and players.

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