Kukla's Korner

Kukla's Korner Hockey

Gary Bettman Is Elected To The Hockey Hall Of Fame

NEW YORK/TORONTO (June 26, 2018) – The Hockey Hall of Fame announced today that NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman was elected to be inducted as a member of the Class of 2018.

Commissioner Bettman’s leadership during his 25 years of service as the National Hockey League’s first commissioner has driven explosive growth of the League – including its expansion to 31 teams and a 10-fold increase in League revenues. His vision and direction have spearheaded changes on and off the ice that have produced unprecedented franchise stability and competitive balance, built the NHL into a global brand, attracted unprecedented network television coverage and developed the League into a multi-media company.

Commissioner Bettman will enter the Hall in the Builders category. He will be inducted Nov. 12, 2018, along with Players Martin BrodeurJayna HeffordMartin St. Louis and Alexander Yakushev and fellow Builder Willie O’Ree.

The announcement of the Class of 2018 was made by Hockey Hall of Fame Chairman Lanny McDonald following today’s meeting of the Hall’s Selection Committee.

“What makes the game of hockey so wonderful is the fans, the players, the coaches, the cities that back their teams, the global growth of hockey, the ever-expanding growth of our game in North America and, of course, the competitive balance we are fortunate to have in our League,” said Hockey Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky. “The Commissioner’s vision to give every Club a chance to win the Stanley Cup has made our game stronger. His leadership and love for hockey is very evident. And hockey has become more entertaining year after year, thanks in part to his passion for the game. Congratulations, Mr. Bettman.”

“I am absolutely delighted, and this honor is long overdue,” said Hockey Hall of Famer Jeremy Jacobs, owner of the Boston Bruins and Chairman of the NHL’s Board of Governors. “Gary has dedicated the last 25 years to the constant improvement of hockey at all levels. His work ethic is legendary and there is no one more deserving.”

“Gary has been a force of nature for the National Hockey League,” said longtime NHL executive Brian Burke, who served as Commissioner Bettman’s first Director of Hockey Operations. “His vision, wisdom and leadership have truly transformed the game at all levels.”

Filed in: NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: gary+bettman

Comments

Paul's avatar

NEW YORK/TORONTO (June 26, 2018) – The Hockey Hall of Fame announced today that Willie O’Ree, the first black player ever to play in the National Hockey League, was elected to be inducted as a member of the Class of 2018.

O’Ree, who made his NHL debut on Jan.18, 1958, playing for the Boston Bruins against the Montreal Canadiens in the Montreal Forum, is a trailblazer who paved the way for the players of diverse ethnic backgrounds who have succeeded him in the subsequent 60 years. In his roles as NHL Diversity Ambassador and Director of Youth Development over the last 20 years, O’Ree has helped establish 39 local grassroots hockey programs and inspired countless young people to play the game in its many forms.

O’Ree will enter the Hall in the Builders category. He will be inducted Nov. 12, 2018, along with Players Martin Brodeur, Jayna Hefford, Martin St. Louis and Alexander Yakushev and fellow Builder, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman.

The announcement of the Class of 2018 was made by Hockey Hall of Fame Chairman Lanny McDonald following today’s meeting of the Hall’s Selection Committee.

“There are a select few about whom it truly can be said: ‘He changed the game.’ Willie O’Ree is among that select few,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. “He did it by stepping onto the ice of the Montreal Forum in a Boston Bruins sweater on Jan. 18, 1958. He has done it just about every day since, inspiring generations of NHL players who followed the path he blazed and working tirelessly to encourage and enable countless boys and girls, who otherwise wouldn’t have had the opportunity, to participate in our game and learn the many life lessons it teaches. We are truly delighted at Willie’s well-earned selection.”

“Sometimes, goals, assists, points or shutouts measure a person’s place in the game,” Hockey Hall of Famer Wayne Gretzky said. “But desire, determination, work ethic and the drive not to let obstacles get in his way? That is why Willie has earned his induction into the Hall.”

“Willie paved the path for the rest of us. In that way he is a true builder of the game,” said Hockey Hall of Famer Grant Fuhr. “If you look up the word ‘builder’ there should be a picture of Willie. He is the Jackie Robinson of hockey.”

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 06/26/18 at 02:42 PM ET

Avatar

The Poor Marty’s… worst HHOF class I’ve ever seen.

Posted by SevensForTed on 06/26/18 at 02:57 PM ET

Avatar

The first black player makes the HHoF 60 years after his debut.

The current commissioner makes the HHoF while still in office.

At least this league never deviates from being the joke that it is.

Posted by CharDeeMacDennis on 06/26/18 at 03:09 PM ET

Wings_in_NYC's avatar

Barf

Posted by Wings_in_NYC on 06/26/18 at 03:14 PM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

Thank goodness!....I know I’ll sleep better tonight… confused

Posted by Down River Dan on 06/26/18 at 03:26 PM ET

Avatar

What a load of horsesh*t - Gretzky’s a company man now, but he surely wasn’t so keen on Bettman when the league was dicking him around on his coach’s salary after he got fired in Phoenix. And Jacobs, well of course he’s delighted, his pet troll has made him lots of coin. What a farce.

Posted by Moose Moss on 06/26/18 at 03:37 PM ET

Paul's avatar

They could have asked player agent Scott Norton, MM…

Should we comment on this before or after our next potential @NHL Lockout??? Builder or wrecker?

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 06/26/18 at 03:40 PM ET

Paul's avatar

from Ken Campbell of The Hockey News,

Does he deserve to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as a builder? Absolutely. Does he deserve to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame as builder in 2018? Absolutely not.

But this is what hockey does. It thumbs its nose at the establishment and wears its status as an outlier with pride. Of course, that’s part of the reason it remains a fringe sport in every country that is not Canada, but these fellas – and the emphasis is definitely on fellas – love to take care of their own. And nothing symbolizes that more than Gary Bettman being inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame while he remains an active commissioner.

The fact that the Hall of Fame’s selection committee sees no conflict in inducting an active commissioner into its ranks borders on mind-boggling. But it’s not as though there is no precedent for this. Clarence Campbell was enshrined in 1966, 11 years before he retired as president and John Zeigler entered the ranks in 1987, five years before he moved on. This is a body that saw fit to induct Jim Gregory as a builder, while he still held the title of chairman of the selection committee. And, of course, there was the induction of former NHL Players’ Association head Alan Eagleson in 1989, three years before he left the job. And we all know how that turned out. The lack of awareness is truly impressive.

read on

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 06/26/18 at 04:03 PM ET

Avatar

never heard boos at the induction ceremony but i bet we do this year

Posted by akwingsfan on 06/26/18 at 04:52 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

never heard boos at the induction ceremony but i bet we do this year

LOL

Posted by bigfrog on 06/26/18 at 10:31 PM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com