A 19-year-old first round draft pick of the New York Rangers collapsed and died while playing for his Russian team today in Russia, according to . While details are few at this point, reported that the ambulance that is usually present at all games in the league in which Alexei Cherepanov was playing was absent, and had to be summoned back when the young player fell ill. It took approximately 15-20 minutes to get Cherepanov to the hospital, and it is unclear whether working defibrillators were available at the arena. Attempts to restart Cherepanov’s heart were unsuccessful.

Time is of the essence when a young athlete collapses while pursuing his or her sport, and the failure to have the ambulance at the arena when it was needed is inexcusable. Unfortunately, it’s likely that the unavailability of the ambulance deprived Cherepanov of the opportunity to be properly revived. That is negligence, plain and simple, and it is a shame.

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