Legendary Buffalo Sabres goalie Dominik Hasek headlines the six-person 2014 Hockey Hall of Fame class announced today.
Joining the six-time Vezina Trophy winner are defenseman Rob Blake, forwards Peter Forsberg and Mike Modano, coach Pat Burns and referee Bill McCreary.
Hasek, of course, was a no-brainer in his first year on the ballot. Some consider the 49-year-old, who spent nine seasons in Buffalo, the greatest goalie ever.
“The Dominator” won two Hart Trophies with the Sabres and two Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings.
The Sabres will be retiring his No. 39 later this year.
Update: Here’s a little from Hasek on a conference call with reporters:
On the honor:
“What a great honor for me to be inducted. What can I say? … What a fantastic time I spent over there with so many great, great players. I’m very grateful today to say I played hockey for such a long time, with such great players. Thank you to all of these guys.”
On getting his chance in Buffalo after making sporadic appearances with Chicago for two seasons:
“Thank you to Buffalo, because getting a chance in Buffalo maybe I wouldn’t be here to today, inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. So I always have to mention I got my first big chance in Buffalo, and thank you to (former coach and general manager) John Muckler, who gave me the chance.”
Check back later for more on Hasek.