The Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2020 has been announced. Those who will be inducted this year include Jarome Iginla, Marian Hossa, Kevin Lowe, Kim St-Pierre and Doug Wilson. Being inducted into the builder category of Hall of Fame is Ken Holland.
“The Hockey Hall of Fame is proud to welcome these hockey legends as Honoured Members,” said Lanny McDonald, Chairman of the Hockey Hall of Fame. “Their contributions to the game of hockey are well documented and their election to the Hockey Hall of Fame is richly deserved.”
The Hockey Hall of Fame consists of the most talented and important players and people who contributed to the growth and success of the sport. Though there isn’t a clear-cut formula to determine whether or not an individual should be inducted, there’s no denying that every single person who will be inducted this year earned the right to be enshrined forever.
Iginla Scored His Way to the Top
At the fore-front of the list was Iginla. A veteran of 21 seasons in the NHL split between the Calgary Flames, Pittsburgh Penguins, Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche and Los Angeles Kings, Iginla was one of the premier goal-scorers of his generation.
Scoring 625 goals and 1,300 points in 1,554 games, he ranks tied for 16th all-time in goals and 34th in total points. Iginla would score at least 30 goals in 12-consecutive full seasons, excluding the lockout-shortened 2012-13 year. He’d also score 37 goals and 68 points in 81 postseason games despite never winning the Stanley Cup in his illustrious career.
Related: The NHL 600-Goal Club
He would captain the Flames from the 2002-03 season until the 2012-13 season when he was traded to the Penguins.
Iginla would be a member of the 1997 all-rookie team and was a two-time winner of the Rocket Richard Trophy while also winning the Art Ross Trophy, Lester B. Pearson Award, King Clancy MEmorial Trophy, NHL Foundation Player Award, Mark Messier Leadership Award.
He’d also win two Olympic Gold Medals and five gold-medals in his career between the World Junior Championships, Olympics and World Championships.
Hossa Dominated on Both Ends of the Ice
Joining Iginla is Hossa, a player who would score 525 goals and 1,134 points – good for 35th and 57th all-time respectively.
Though Hossa would fall short of winning the Stanley Cup in consecutive seasons while playing for the losing team in each series – the Penguins in 2008 and the Detroit Red Wings in 2009, he’d go on to win three Stanley Cups in his career as a member of the Chicago Blackhawks. Those victories cam in 2010, 2013 and 2015 respectively.
Hossa made a name for himself as one of the best two-way players in the NHL for nearly 20 seasons. His talent was clear from his rookie season as he’d earn a spot on the 1999 all-rookie team,
Though he was unable to finish his NHL career on his own terms, he still has a lot to look back on and be proud of given that he is one of the most accomplished hockey players in the history of the game.
Lowe Finally Enshrined in the Hall of Fame
It’s a real testament to how many talented players have played the game of hockey when someone like Lowe was eligible for an induction for nearly two decades before hearing his name called.
In 2020, Lowe would finally get the call he was waiting for in 2020 and it was certainly well-deserved.
Winning six Stanley Cup Championships, five coming with the Edmonton Oilers and one coming from his time with the New York Rangers, Lowe proved himself as one of the best defenders in the NHL for years.
Though he may not have the offensive output that his teammate in Paul Coffey could boast, he was still very much a part of that production due to his ability to anchor the defense while Coffey worked his wonders offensively.
Scoring 84 goals and 432 points in 1,254 games, Lowe’s offensive numbers weren’t bad by any stretch of the imagination. They just weren’t as prolific as some of his peers were from that same era.
Lowe would win the King Clancy Memorial Trophy in 1990 but as mentioned, it was his contributions to six Stanley Cup-winning teams that really solidified Lowe’s name among the best in hockey history.
Kim St-Pierre Succeeded at Every Level
The Hockey Hall of Fame wouldn’t be complete without the inclusion of St-Pierre in the ranks.
One of the most prolific goaltenders in hockey, St-Pierre would backstop the Canadian Womens’ team to three gold medals and was a five-time IIHF World Champion as well.
A star at McGill University, St-Pierre was the first woman in Canadian Interuniversity Sports to win a men’s regular-season game when McGill beat Ryerson by a score of 5-2 in November of 2003.
St-Pierre would be named the top goaltender at the 2001 and 2004 world Championships and was also named the Top Goaltender at the 2002 Winter Olympics, proving her dominance between the pipes time and time again.
She holds numerous records in international play as well, including 15 shutouts, 24 wins and the lowest goals-against average with a sparkling 0.84 marker.
Winning the Clarkson Cup in the CWHL as a member of the Montreal Stars, St-Piere would becoming one of only three women to ever win the Clarkson Cup, an Olympic Gold Medal and a gold medal at the Women’s World Hockey Championships. She was also named the CWHL’s Top Goaltender for the 2007-08 season.
Doug Wilson’s Legacy Stretches Beyond On-Ice Play
In many cases, involvement in the sport of hockey doesn’t just end when a player hangs up their skates and retires from on-ice play. Like many former-players before him, Wilson’s career wouldn’t end after his playing years were finished.
Scoring 237 goals and 827 points in 1,024 games (as well as 19 goals and 80 points in 95 postseason games), Wilson would be one of the most offensively-gifted defenders of his era in the NHL.
He’d win the Norris Trophy in 1982 and led all Blackhawk’s defenders in scoring for 10 consecutive seasons. He is still the Blackhawks’ all-time leader in goals and points by a defender.
Wilson would finish his career as a five-time Norris Trophy-nominee and won a Gold Medal as a member of Team Canada at the World/Canada Cup Series in 1984.
Though he spent the majority of his playing career in Chicago as a member of the Blackhawks from 1977 until 1991, Wilson would finish his career as a member (and first captain) of the San Jose Sharks – a team that he may be more known for representing for newer fans of the NHL.
Nearly a decade after his retirement, Wilson would be hired as the general manager of the Sharks on May 13, 2003. Though the Sharks wouldn’t qualify for the playoffs in the 2002-03 season, they would qualify for the postseason in 14 of the next 16 seasons, including a run of 10 consecutive playoff appearances in Wilson’s first 10 seasons with the team.
Only four of those 14 playoff appearances would end in a first-round exit with five ending in the second round, four ending in the conference finals and one ending in a Stanley Cup Final loss.
Holland Inducted as a Builder
It was only a matter of time before Holland earned a call from the Hockey Hall of Fame.
In 22 seasons as the general manager of the Detroit Red Wings, Holland would solidify his spot in history as one of the very best team-builders to ever do it.
Winning three Stanley Cup Championships and winning more games than any other franchise in that time, the Red Wings would become the gold-standard for every single NHL team looking to create any sort of long-standing success in the league.
Currently the general manager of the Oilers, Holland is now seeing success in Edmonton that the team has sorely lacked for quite some time. Though much of that can be attributed to the players who were accumulated before he ever took over the job in Edmonton, there’s still something to say about how well teams do for him when he’s at the helm of the team.