While the Capitals and Penguins are feuding rivals on the ice, the teams are coming together to benefit the families of the KHL’s Lokomotiv Yaroslavl through a fundraiser Thursday in their first meeting of the 2011-12 season.


Image via Capitals Overtime

The Penguins then approached Washington about wearing commorative patches on their jerseys (pictured at left), signing the sweaters and auctioning them off to raise money for the families of those who died in the plane crash on Sept. 7 in Russia. Even if he doesn’t play tonight, Malkin will participate in the ceremonial faceoff against Alex Ovechkin and auction his jersey.

“We need [to] help,” Malkin said. “It’s very important for me, for us, I think we one big hockey team family and we need [to] help because of the big crash in Russia.”

Said Ovechkin: “It was a big tragedy in Russia and all sports. I think right now everybody have to respond to it and help family out. It was unbelievable club with great history and we just want to support them how we can.”

The auction for autographed player jerseys begins at puck drop of tonight’s game and runs through Oct. 27 on NHL.com. All proceeds will benefit the families of the Lokomotiv team.