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Chris Pronger’s Path To The Hockey Hall Of Fame

from Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch,

There were boos when Chris Pronger first arrived in St. Louis, the product of fans liking Brendan Shanahan — the player the Blues traded away to get him — more than they liked him. There was the time he took a puck to the chest and his heart stopped on the ice. There were the concussions that ended his career prematurely and finally, there was the bylaw change that made him eligible for the Hockey Hall of Fame before he had officially retired from the game.

It’s been no ordinary path to enshrinement for Pronger.

“I think nothing I’ve done has been the easy way,” Pronger said Monday after he was announced as part of the Hall of Fame’s 2015 induction class. “This would follow suit. I’m excited and proud to be part of this group.”...

“He was a warrior out there on the ice,” Lidstrom said Monday. “You knew he would play more than half the game. He was a tough guy to play against. Whether he was on the power play or killing penalties, he was going to be one of those players you had to beat to beat St. Louis. Those were great battles. It was like a playoff game every time we played.”...

Pronger acknowledged Monday that, with the changes in the rules since he broke in, there isn’t really anyone in the league who plays the way he did, which he admitted might not be a bad thing.

“With the evolution of the game and now with more medical research,” he said, “we understand hits to the head, illegal hits to the head, better. Most of the guys in the game today have gone through this in junior or college hockey and there’s a much greater awareness of the ramifications that result in hits like that. It’s hard to put into words other than the fact the game isn’t played that way anymore. It’s played with more regard for fellow competitors. We grew up in a different time and age. We did what we had to to win a hockey game. Now it’s so much more difficult to play on the edge the way I did.”

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: chris+pronger

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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.

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