Edmonton

Edmonton Oilers McDavid and Nurse show up at World's Longest Hockey Game

Brent Saik's bid to raise $2 million to help the Alberta Cancer Foundation through the World's Longest Hockey Game is attracting all sorts of attention. Most in the form of donations, but on Tuesday afternoon Saik and other players got a visit from Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid and defenceman Darnell Nurse.

'They respect what we're doing this for, and we appreciate that very much,' says Brent Saik

Connor McDavid and Darnell Nurse pose with players at Saiker's Acres

Brent Saik's bid to raise $2 million to help the Alberta Cancer Foundation through the World's Longest Hockey Game is attracting all sorts of attention. 

Most in the form of donations, but on Tuesday afternoon Saik and other players got a visit from Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid and defenceman Darnell Nurse. 

"I'll tell you what, we've had some very special guests," said Saik, whose group of 40 skaters hit the halfway mark of 125 hours on Wednesday afternoon.

Other notable athletes have also come by to show support, including Edmonton Eskimos quarterback Mike Reilly and last weekend several members from the 1984-85 Oilers hockey team.

But to have arguably the best player in the NHL lend his support meant a lot to the players who have put up with high windchills and bitterly cold temperatures since the first puck was dropped on Friday.

"It means a lot to everybody," said Saik. "Showing their support, knowing that they're out here and they're thinking about what we're doing, it helps us. They respect what we're doing this for, and we appreciate that very much." 

This is Saik's fifth attempt at breaking the world record on his outdoor rink at Saiker's Acres, just east of Sherwood Park.

The Sherwood Park optometrist started the game with friends, and in 2003 they played 82 hours to set the record. The group has raised more than $3 million in four previous games. 

This time around, the target is $2 million. Thanks to more than 800 volunteers and tons of community support, Saik is hopeful. 

"You have to have an unfortunate resume to play in this game," said Saik, who lost his father to cancer in 1994 and his wife in 2003. 

Everyone on the ice has a connection to someone who has fought, survived, or lost a battle with cancer. 

Randy Allan is part of an exclusive group of five who have played in all of the World's Longest Hockey Games. 

"I think this event definitely puts a spotlight on it. I think every single person that comes out has been touched by cancer, and a lot of them are cancer victims themselves."

Saik and his friends set a Guinness World Record on Feb. 16, 2015, of 250 hours, three minutes and 20 seconds. It was surpassed by a group in Buffalo, N.Y. by one second in July 2017.

The players expect to break that record on Family Day, sometime between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.

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