Former Philadelphia Flyers goalie Roman Chechmanek has died at the age of 52.
The team announced his passing on Sunday. No cause of death was provided.
— New York Post (@nypost) November 12, 2023
“The Philadelphia Flyers are extremely saddened to hear of the passing of former goaltender Roman Cechmanek,” Flyers president of hockey operations Keith Jones said in a statement from the team.
“A late-round draft pick, Cechmanek spent three seasons with the team from 2000 through 2003 where he was highly successful and made an instant impact to our club on the ice and in the locker room.
“Beyond his numbers, which were outstanding, he was beloved by fans and teammates for his personality, distinct style and pride in stopping the puck. He led the Flyers to three straight playoff appearances, two 100-point seasons and an Atlantic Division title, while also being a part of a remarkable tandem with Robert Esche to win the NHL’s William M. Jennings Trophy awarded to the goaltenders with the fewest goals scored against during the regular season in 2002-03," it added.
Former Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Roman Čechmánek suddenly died on Sunday in his home country of Czechia, the team said. He was 52 years old. https://t.co/Lh0ZSLamB5
— CBS Philadelphia (@CBSPhiladelphia) November 12, 2023
"Čechmánek arrived to the Flyers at 29 years old after he was drafted in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft. He played 163 total games with the Flyers from 2000-03," CBS News reported.
"In the 2000-01 season, Čechmánek was the runner-up for the Vezina Trophy and named to the NHL All-Star Game. He also finished fourth in the 2000-01 Hart Trophy balloting," it continued.
— Chris 🇺🇸 (@Chris_1791) November 13, 2023
"The Flyers traded him to the Kings in 2003 and he was later traded to the Chicago Blackhawks," Fox News reported.
"He played in Germany and Sweden before returning to his home country to serve as a coach. He is survived by his two sons and one daughter," it noted.
The loss of the former star led to widespread responses on social media, especially from Flyers fans who remembered his strong playoff seasons that included numerous key saves.
His late start in the NHL at the age of 29 may have led to a shorter career but one that left a strong impact in the main city where he played. He was also well-known for his play in the 1998 Winter Olympics where he helped lead the Czech Republic to a gold medal.
After his playing days in the NHL and in Europe, Cechmanek finished out his days in his home country, ending where he began as a national hockey hero whose impact was worldwide during his key playing years.