TORONTO (Hockey Hall of Fame Press Release) – Pat Quinn, Chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame and John Davidson, Chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s Selection Committee, announced today that four individualshave been elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in the Player Category. In addition one individual was elected in the Builder Category and one in the Referee or Linesman category. The vote took place today at the annual meeting of the Selection Committee in Toronto.
“The Hockey Hall of Fame is proud to welcome these six hockey legends as Honoured Members,” said John Davidson. “Their contributions to the game of hockey are well documented and their election to the Hockey Hall of Fame is richly deserved.”
Rob Blake was born in Simcoe, Ontario, and played his college hockey at Bowling Green State University from 1987 – 1990, where he was a Hobey Baker finalist in his last season before turning pro with the Los Angeles Kings. He went on to play 20 NHL seasons with three NHL teams, winning the Stanley Cup with Colorado in 2001. A 12-time NHL 40+ regular season point scorer, Blake is a member of the IIHF’s elite Triple Gold Club winning a Stanley Cup, Olympic gold medal and the IIHF World Championship.
“This is a tremendous honour,”said Blake. “I am fortunate to have been around the game of hockey and have it be a key part of my life for as long as I can remember.”
Swedish native Peter Forsberg joined the NHL after playing five seasons in the Swedish Elite league. A first round selection of the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1991 Entry Draft, he played 14 NHL seasons and was the NHL’s Rookie of the Year in 1995. A two-time Stanley Cup champion in 1996 and 2001 with Colorado, Forsberg also won the Hart Trophy in 2003. He won IIHF gold medals in 1992 and 1998 and the Olympic gold medal in 1994 in Lillehammer, Norway.
“It’s been a good run and I wouldn’t change places with anybody,” said Forsberg. “Joining Borje Salming and Mats Sundin in the Hall of Fame as the third Swedish member makes it especially gratifying for me.”
Goaltender Dominik Hasek played nine seasons professionally in the Czech League before joining the Chicago Blackhawks during the 1990-91 season. A six-time Vezina Trophy winner as the NHL’s best goaltender, he also won the Hart Trophy as the league’s MVP in 1997 and 1998 – the first time a goaltender had won that trophy since Jacques Plante in 1962. He won Stanley Cups in Detroit in 2002 and 2008 and also won an Olympic gold medal in 1998 in Nagano, Japan.
“After I retired I really began to appreciate what the game did for me,” said Hasek. “My goal was just to make the NHL, and achieving this recognition is far beyond what I could have imagined.”
A native of Livonia, Michigan, Mike Modano played his Junior hockey with the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL where he was drafted first overall in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft by the Minnesota North Stars franchise, with whom he played 21 of his 22 NHL seasons.Modano holds the NHL record for most goals (561) and points (1,374) by an American-born player. An Olympic silver medalist, he also led the Dallas Stars to the Stanley Cup in 1999.
“When I played I always hoped that I could make an impact on the game, both on and off the ice, and this honour recognizes that,”said Modano. “I love this game and as an American born player, I owe a lot to the people in Prince Albert who helped me take my game to the next level.”
In the Builder Category, Pat Burns was elected. After a 17 year career as a police officer, Pat coached the Hull Olympiques of the QMJHL for four seasons. From there he progressed to the Sherbrooke Canadiens of the AHL in 1987. In 1988, he began his 14- year NHL coaching career with the Montreal Canadiens – winning the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s Coach of the Year in his first season. With a career .573 winning percentage, Pat also won the Stanley Cup with New Jersey in 2003. Pat passed away on November 19th, 2010 in Sherbrooke, Quebec.
“It’s a great day for me and my family,” said Lynn Burns (Pat’s widow). “I’m speechless and tremendously happy. Pat would be proud and this is well-deserved.”
In the Referee and Linesman category, Bill McCreary was elected. After playing Junior A hockey, Bill joined the NHL in 1984. He officiated 1,700 regular season NHL games and 282 NHL playoff games before ending his career on April 2nd, 2011 in Washington, D.C. Internationally, Bill worked the 1998 and 2002 Olympics, including the gold medal games at both tournaments.
“I was fortunate living in Guelph to be encouraged to get into officiating by some of the NHL greats that were involved in the game there, “said McCreary. “Just as with the players, being in the Stanley Cup Final is the goal of any official and I’m pleased that I was able to have that recognition on several occasions.”
The 2014 Induction Celebration will be held on Monday, November 17th at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. For more information regarding the 2014 Induction Weekend/Celebration, visit http://www.hhof.com.
• Born on January 29, 1965 in Pardubice, Czechoslovakia
• Played nine seasons in the Czech League with Tesla Pardubice (1981-82 to 1988-89) and Dukla Jihlava (1989-90)
• Five-time Czechoslovakian Goaltender of the Year (1986-90), three-time Player of the Year (1987, 1989, 1990), and three-time First All-Star Team (1988, 1989, 1990)
• Drafted 207th overall in the 10th round by the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft
• Played 1 season in the International Hockey League with the Indianapolis Ice and was named to the league’s First All-Star Team in 1991
• Played 16 NHL seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks, Buffalo Sabres, Detroit Red Wings and Ottawa Senators, 1990-91 to 2007-08
• Named to the NHL’s All-Rookie Team in 1992
• Six-time NHL First All-Star Team Goaltender (1994-95, 1997-99, 2001)
• Six NHL All-Star Game appearances (1996-99, 2001, 2002)
• Six-time Vezina Trophy winner as the NHL’s Best Goaltender (1994, 1995, 1997-99, 2001), and three-time William M. Jennings Trophy recipient for fewest goals against (1994 with Fuhr, 2008 with Chris Osgood, and 2001)
• First European goaltender to win the Vezina Trophy (1994)
• Lester B. Pearson Award recipient as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player as voted by the players in 1997 and 998
• Hart Memorial Trophy winner as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player, 1997, 1998; first goaltender to win the trophy since Jacques Plante in 1962.
• Two-time Stanley Cup champion (2002, 2008) with the Detroit Red Wings
• First European starting goaltender to win the Stanley Cup (2002)
• Holds the Buffalo Sabres’ club record for most career shutouts with 55 and most shutouts in a season with 13 (1997-98)
• Returned to the Czech Extraliga for part of the 1994-95 NHL stoppage of play with his hometown HC Pardubice, and for the 2009-10 season with the HC Eaton Pardubice
• Named the Most Valuable Player, Playoffs Most Valuable Player, and Best Goaltender of the Czech Extraliga in 2010
• Represented Czechoslovakia in one European Junior Championship (1982), two IIHF World Junior Championships (1983, 1985), five IIHF World Championships (1983, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1990)
• European Junior Championship All-Star Team Goaltender and tournament Best Goaltender (1982)
• IIHF World Junior Championship silver medalist 1983, 1985
• IIHF World Junior Championship All-Star Team Goaltender and tournament Best Goaltender (1983)
• Tied for second all-time in most career wins by a goaltender at the IIHF World Junior Championship with 9
• IIHF World Champion silver medalist 1983, bronze medalist 1987, 1988, and 1990
• Three-time IIHF World Championship All-Star Team Goaltender (1987, 1989, 1990) and two-time tournament Best Goaltender (1987, 1989)
• Represented Czechoslovakia at three Canada Cup tournaments (1984, 1987, 1991)
• Represented Czechoslovakia at the 1988 Winter Olympics, and the Czech Republic at the 1998, 2002, and 2006 Olympics
• Olympic gold medalist 1998 and bronze medalist 2006
• Tied for the all-time lead in most Olympics participated in by a goaltender with 4, and ranks third all-time in most career Olympic games played by a goaltender with 16; ranks fifth all-time in most career Olympic minutes played by a goaltender with 835:17
• Named the Best Goaltender at the 1998 Winter Olympic Games
• Player number 39 scheduled to be retired by Buffalo Sabres during 2014-15 NHL season
• Announced his NHL retirement on June 9, 2008, and official retirement from playing on October 9, 2012