The announcement Tuesday that four of the most gifted American hockey players would be enshrined into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame offered unprecedented historic significance. Not only did honorees Brian Leetch, Mike Richter, Brett Hull and Cammi Granato each earn silver medals at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City for their respective teams, but the latter is the first female in the 36-year history of the Hall to be honored among 134 members. Induction ceremonies are Oct. 10 at the University of Denver's Magness Arena. Granato, who was inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation Hall of Fame last May, was honored to learn she would be the first woman in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame. "It's great to be honored alongside these three other inductees because I watched and idolized them when they played," said Granato, who last year received the NHL's Lester Patrick Award, along with Leetch, in recognition of her outstanding service to hockey in the United States. "I watched all three in college and I remember Mike and Brian playing with my brother (Tony Granato) on the 1988 Olympic Team in Calgary. It's also very special to be the first woman inducted." Granato's career, particularly at the international level, has played a key role in the growth of women's hockey. She began playing as a 5-year-old, skating in the back yard of her Downers Grove, Ill., home with her sister and three brothers, including future NHL star and current Colorado Avalanche coach Tony Granato. Unable to play in a league with girls her age, she joined a boy's team and earned a scholarship to Providence College. "I remember watching the `88 Olympics in Calgary and telling my mom that, one day, I wanted to be an Olympian and play women's hockey," Granato said. "At the time, playing college hockey and getting a scholarship were most important, but the possibility of someday playing in the Olympics was something I really hoped for. Fortunately, three years before my senior year at Providence (1992-93), I discovered my dream of playing for the national team." A member of the national team beginning in 1990, Granato is the program's all-time scoring leader with 343 points (186 goals) in 205 games. She achieved international fame by captaining the U.S. team to a gold medal at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, Japan
Think I'll have a wank over these tomorrow.
This isn't the Hockey Hall of Fame in toronto though, this is the US hall of fame, if I'm not mistaken. Good names, and all guys that aren't in the regular hall and should be, but I don't think the actual hall's names are announced for a little while.
I was a major Rangers fan for a while, so good to see Richter & Leetch make it. (Gretzky's a no-brainer, but can anyone tell me if Messier's in yet?)
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