NEW YORK (AP) — The National Hockey League and the Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames are each donating $100,000 to the Canadian Red Cross relief efforts in fire-ravaged Fort McMurray, Alberta.
Wildfires have forced the evacuation of more than 80,000 residents. The Canadian Red Cross will facilitate care by providing shelter, food, accommodation and comfort.
"The National Hockey League family stands with all who have been affected by the devastating fires in Fort McMurray," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said Thursday. "We send thoughts of support and encouragement to our neighbors as they confront the physical and emotional impacts of this disaster."
The NHL's charitable arm, the NHL Foundation, is providing the donation. The NHL also encouraged fans to visit www.redcross.ca to make a contribution.
The Edmonton Eskimos are leading a Canadian Football League initiative that includes a combined $50,000 donation to the Red Cross from all nine teams.
Help is coming from outside the province as well, with the St. Louis Blues donating the proceeds of their 50/50 raffle at their Stanley Cup playoff game Thursday night toward relief efforts. Blues forward Scottie Upshall is from Fort McMurray.
Canadian golfer Graham DeLaet pledged $500 for every birdie he makes this week to the Canadian Red Cross. He is playing in the PGA's Wells Fargo Championship in Charlotte, North Carolina.