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Tuesday, January 13, 2015
The Buffalo Sabres commissioned this painting for Dominik Hasek, to be presented to him prior to tonight's game against the Detroit Red Wings when the former Sabres goaltender's jersey number is retired. (PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY MARK GRAY)


BUFFALO — As part of a jersey retirement ceremony planned for tonight, the Buffalo Sabres will present a 36-inch by 48-inch original oil painting to former Sabres goaltender Dominik Hasek.

The painting, done by sports painter Mark Gray, will also be duplicated in the form of 390 lithographs, which will be sold to fans, with the funds raised going to Hasek's Heros.

Gray said he was chosen from a number of artists to paint the depiction of Hasek by the former Sabre himself. The San Jose-based artist has worked with the Sabres before, on a project for former Sabre Dave Hannon in the 1990s.

At Hasek's request, the painting also includes former Sabres Richard Smehlik, Michael Peca, and Alexei Zhitnik. The painting also features an anonymous Toronto Maple Leafs player, Gray said.

Hasek, who was the fifth and final Sabres player to wear No. 39, will be the seventh player in franchise history to receive the honor of having his number raised to the rafters. He was inducted into the Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame on March 29 and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Nov. 17.

Hasek will join six other Sabres legends who have had their jerseys officially retired from use by the team. Other retired jerseys include: Gilbert Perreault (No. 11, retired in 1990); Rick Martin (No. 7, retired in 1995); Rene Robert (No. 14, retired in 1995); Tim Horton (No. 2, retired in 1996); Danny Gare (No. 18, retired in 2005); and Pat LaFontaine (No. 16, retired in 2006).

Fans are encouraged to arrive early and be in their seats by 6:45 p.m. to watch the 7 p.m. banner-raising ceremony. Additionally, a commemorative “39” Hasek banner, sponsored by First Niagara, will be handed out to all fans in attendance at tonight’s game.

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