(Reuters) – Canadian Eric Lindros, whose impressive National Hockey League career was cut short by injuries, and Russian standout Sergei Makarov were elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday as part of the Class of 2016.
Three-time Stanley Cup-winning goalie Rogie Vachon was also selected for admission while the late Pat Quinn was selected in the Builder category after more than four decades in the NHL as a player, coach and general manager.
Lindros was drafted first overall in 1991 and spent the bulk of his 13-year NHL career with Philadelphia. His offensive talent and imposing physical presence helped him average over a point a game in the regular season and playoffs.
“I was very fortunate to have coaches, teammates, billets and parents who supported me throughout my career.” said Lindros, who had 865 points in 760 NHL games. “It also takes a lot of luck to get to the NHL.”
A seven-time NHL All-Star who was named the league’s Most Valuable Player in 1995, Lindros also won a gold medal at the 2002 Winter Olympics and world junior championships (1990, 1991).
Lindros, who has been eligible for induction since 2010, was one of the world’s top players during his prime but was forced to retire after a series of concussions.
Makarov led the Soviet League in scoring for nine seasons, while also winning eight world championship gold medals and two Olympic gold medals.
He later joined the NHL as a member of the Calgary Flames in 1989 and went on to play in over 400 NHL games.
“For everyone who plays the game, this is the top place,” said Makarov. “It will be so nice to join all of those great players.”
Quinn, who was known affectionately as “The Big Irishman,” was twice awarded the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s top coach. He also led Canada to their first Olympic gold medal in 50 years at the 2002 Olympics.
Vachon joined the Montreal Canadiens in 1966 and won three Stanley Cups in his first six NHL seasons. After being traded to Los Angeles in 1971, Vachon continued his stellar career for 11 more seasons before retiring to become an NHL coach.
The official induction ceremony will be held on Nov. 14 at the Toronto-based Hockey Hall of Fame.
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Larry Fine)