It has been quite the eventful past few days for Chris Pronger. On Saturday, he was traded. On Monday, he was immortalized.
This weekend, Pronger’s contract was traded by the Philadelphia Flyers, along defenseman Nicklas Grossmann, to the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for center Sam Gagner and a conditional draft pick in either 2016 or 2017. Though not officially retired, the 40-year-old Pronger has not played since Nov. 19, 2011 due to post-concussion issues. Thanks to a change in the NHL bylaws, he became eligible to be elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
On Monday, Pronger was indeed elected, along with former NHL stars Nicklas Lidstrom , Sergei Fedorov and Phil Housley. Filling out the Class of 2015 will be US women’s legend Angela Ruggiero and builders Peter Karmanos Jr. and Bill Hay. Bob McKenzie of TSN, winner of the Elmer Ferguson Memorial Award for excellence in hockey journalism, and Nick Nickson, radio voice of the Los Angeles Kings, winner of the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for outstanding contributions to broadcasting; will also be honored at the ceremony.
Lindstrom, Fedorov and Pronger were all chosen in their first year of eligibility. Here are the player bios of the Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2015:
GP: 1,248 G: 483 A: 696 P: 1,179 PIM: 839 +/-: 261
Teams: Detroit Red Wings, Anaheim Ducks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Washington Capitals
Having been selected by the Red Wings in the fourth round (74th overall) as Nicklas Lindstrom, Fedorov was one of the most dynamic forward of his generation. Capable of playing center, wing and even defense; he was dominant at both ends of the ice.
In 1994, Fedorov was awarded the Hart Memorial Trophy, the Lester B. Pearson Trophy (now the Ted Lindsay Award) and the Frank J. Selke Trophy. The latter of which he would win again in 1996. He has also won both the hardest shot and fastest skater competition at the all-star game.
Fedorov won the Stanley Cup on three occasions as a member of the Red Wings. He also won gold at the World Championship in three different decades while representing Russia; coming out on top in 1989, 1990 and 2008.
GP: 1,495 G: 338 A: 894 P: 1,232 PIM: 822 +/-: -53
Teams: Buffalo Sabres, Winnipeg Jets, St. Louis Blues, Calgary Flames, New Jersey Devils, Washington Capitals, Chicago Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafs
When he retired in 2003, Housley left the game of hockey with the most points and games played by an American-born player in NHL history. A smart defenseman with great offensive instincts, he surpassed the 20-goal mark in seven different campaigns, topping out at 31 in the 1983-1984 season. IN his career, he was selected to seven All-Star Games.
Always one to answer the call to represent his country, Housley played for the US in six World Championships, serving as captain three times. He played in two Canada Cups and captured gold in the 1996 World Cup of Hockey. He also took home silver in the 2002 Olympics.
GP: 1,564 G: 264 A: 878 P: 1,142 PIM: 514 +/-: 450
Team: Detroit Red Wings
A third-round selection (53rd) overall by the Red Wings in the 1989 NHL Entry Draft, Lindstom would play all 1,564 of his games (fourth all-time amongst defensemen) for the Red Wings. HE won the Stanley Cup four times, becoming the first European born and trained player to win the Conn Smythe in 2002 and the first to captain a Stanley Cup champion in 2008.
He represented his native Sweden at four Olympics, winning gold in 2006. He is a member of the Triple Gold Club, having won a World Championship in 1991.
Ranking sixth all-time in points amongst defensemen, Lindstrom won the Norris Trophy seven times, which trails only Bobby Orr. He was a First-Team All-Star on 10 occasions. He currently works as a scout for the Red Wings.
GP: 1,167 G: 157 A: 541 P: 698 PIM: 1,590 +/-: 183
Teams: Hartford Whalers, St. Louis Blues, Edmonton Oilers, Anaheim Ducks, Philadelphia Flyers
One of the most physically dominating defensemen of his era, Pronger patrolled NHL bluelines for 18 seasons. He and Bobby Orr are the only defensemen in history to capture the Hart Memorial Trophy and the Norris Trophy in the same season, doing it in 2000.
Pronger captured his only Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007. He is also a two-time Olympian with his native Canada, winning gold in both 2002 and 2010. Also a member of the Triple Gold Club, he won a World Championship in 1997.
His career was cut short due to a concussion. He currently works for the NHL Department of Player Safety.