Fuhr, LaFontaine To Hall Of Fame

Archived from 2003-04 season.

NHL teams

Pat LaFontaine and Grant Fuhr were inducted to the hockey Hall of Fame on Monday. Detroit Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch and amateur coach Brian Kilrea joined the hall in the builders' category.

Goaltender Grant Fuhr, who won five Stanley Cup championships with the Edmonton Oilers from 1984-90, was elected in his first year of eligibility.

"I think I was fortunate to be on a lot of good teams and win a lot of games, and that is the key, that I can say I was always a winner," Fuhr said. "We had a huge family in Edmonton, much more than a team."

Fuhr had 403 wins in 19 seasons that also included stints with the Toronto Maple Leafs , Buffalo Sabres , Los Angeles Kings , St. Louis Blues and Calgary Flames .

LaFontaine registered 1,013 points in 865 NHL games in a career cut short by concussions. He also had six consecutive 40+ goal seasons.

"Guys who have gone through postconcussion syndrome will tell you it changes your perspective on life," LaFontaine said. "You don't have as much control as you think you do. You reflect and you learn to appreciate the little things . . . and truly embrace what you have."

"The Hall is something you think about, but you don't really come to grips with it until it actually happens to you. I'm thrilled and I'm especially happy for Grant (Fuhr), a former teammate of mine. To be selected to the Hall, that's some pretty good company to be keeping."

Ilitch bought the Red Wings in 1982 and has turned a terrible team with only 2,100 season ticket holders to one of the NHL's elite teams.

"I sometimes wonder how it all happened," Ilitch said. "But we brought in colorful players and the fans related to them immediately."

Contact The HockeyNut - Front Page - Archive

Copyright©1997-2003 The HockeyNut