O’Ree, Brodeur, Bettman headline Hall of Fame class; Rutherford still waiting for call
A race-relations pioneer, the NHL’s all-time winningest goaltender and the league’s current commissioner will highlight the 2018 induction class into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Willie O’Ree, Martin Brodeur and Gary Bettman will be joined in enshrinement in November by Martin St. Louis, Jayne Hefford and Alexander Yakushev.
Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford and assistant coach Sergei Gonchar were not elected.
Rutherford seems to be a shoo-in for the honor. He’s the only GM in the expansion era to win the Stanley Cup with two different teams. The only question is the timing of his election.
Gonchar was in his first year of eligibility. Former Penguins defenseman Sergei Zubov was also passed over for induction.
O’Ree, 82, broke the NHL’s color barrier when he played for the Boston Bruins in 1958. He now serves as an ambassador for the league.
Brodeur, a three-time Stanley Cup champion, is the league’s all-time leader with 691 wins and 125 shutouts.
Bettman has been commissioner since 1993, and his induction will likely be controversial. While he has presided over unprecedented growth of the game, he has also been involved in three major work stoppages.
St. Louis, a Hart Trophy winner and Stanley Cup champion, recorded 1,033 career points.
Hefford was a five-time Canadian Olympian, winning five gold medals. Yakushev was a two-time Olympic gold medalist for the Soviet Union in the 1970s.