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It's August and the hockey news is sparse.  However, there was a story in the Northumberland news that caught our eye this weekend.  The paper is running a series on gay athletes in local sports, starting with a young hockey player in part I:

Ryan felt sick to his stomach after he made it to the bench after a bone-crushing check. But the pain he felt throughout his body was numbed by the one word which brought on the nausea: fag.

"After he hit me, he skated away and called me a fag," said Ryan, whose name has been changed to protect his identity. "I knew I was gay, but he didn't. But in sports, that's what guys do. They call each other names."

The fact is no one knows Ryan is gay. No one -- not his mom, and especially not his dad. If not for a close-knit, anonymous support group he visits, his story would not be in print today.

The rest of the piece (a really good read) can be found here.  I highly suggest checking it out this morning.

More links after the jump...

Crunching Numbers: 2010-2011 Player Projections

MLHS has another set of point projections for you to squabble over

Knowing something about the past can make being a Leaf fan even more fun now

Great little piece from VLM this AM

Solution to Concussions

Another new LeafsHQ article.  That's like, two days in a row

Advice for Brian Burke: Sign Trent Hunter

New stuff from Puckin' Eh