Bure, Oates, Sakic, Sundin enter Hockey Hall of Fame
Pavel Bure was a superb goal-scorer whose career was shortened by injury
Master playmaker Oates began his NHL career as an undrafted free agent
Sundin was the first European drafted No. 1; Sakic a legendary captain
(SI.com) -- Pavel Bure, Adam Oates, Joe Sakic and Mats Sundin have been elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame after today's vote at the annual Selection Committee meeting in Toronto.
"The Hockey Hall of Fame is proud to welcome these four hockey legends as Honoured Members," committee co-chairman Jim Gregory said in an NHL press release. "Their contributions to the game of hockey are well documented and their election to the Hockey Hall of Fame is richly deserved."
Bure, a swift-skating winger known as the Russian Rocket, won the Calder Trophy as the NHL's Rookie of the Year for 1991-92 as a member of the Vancouver Canucks. The six-time NHL All-Star led the NHL in goal scoring three times. He had two 60-goal campaigns and three of 50-plus, before finishing his career with the New York Rangers in 2003.
Oates, who today was named the new head coach of the Washington Capitals, was an undrafted free agent who signed with the Detroit Red Wings in 1985. He played 19 NHL seasons with seven teams and posted four 100-plus point seasons. He retired in 2004 ranked sixth all-time in assists (1,063).
Sakic, a center, was drafted 15th overall by the Quebec Nordiques in 1987 and moved with the franchise to Colorado, eventually spending his 20-year career with the organization. He was team captain for 17 seasons, the second longest such tenure in NHL history, and led the Avalanche to Stanley Cup championships in 1996 and 2001. He also played for Canada at three Olympics, winning gold and being chosen as the tournament's MVP in 2002.
Sundin, a Swedish center, was the first European-born player drafted by an NHL team first overall: Quebec in 1989. He played for Toronto for 13 seasons and became the Original Six franchise's all-time leader in goals (420) and assists (567) as well as the first Swedish-born player to tally 1,000 points in the NHL. He skated for Sweden in 14 major international tournaments, winning Olympic gold in 2006.
The 2012 induction ceremony will be held on Monday, November 12 in Toronto.