Hasek headlines Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2014
(Reuters) - Dominik Hasek, a six-time Vezina Trophy winner as the National Hockey League's best goalie and twice league MVP, was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday as part of a six-member class of 2014.
Also gaining induction in the Player category were American Mike Modano and Canadian Rob Blake. Late coach Pat Burns was selected in the Builder category while former referee Bill McCreary was added in the Referee/Linesman category.
"My goal was just to make the NHL, and achieving this recognition is far beyond what I could have imagined," Hasek said in a statement released by the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Hasek played nine seasons professionally in his native Czech Republic before joining the NHL's Chicago Blackhawks in 1990.
He eventually joined the Buffalo Sabres where he went on to win six Vezina Trophies during an eight-season span that also saw him become the first goalie to win the Hart Memorial Trophy as most valuable player since Jacques Plante in 1962.
Hasek won Stanley Cups with the Detroit Red Wings in 2002 and 2008 and also backstopped the Czech Republic to Olympic gold at the 1998 Nagano Games.
Modano holds the NHL record for most goals (561) and points (1,374) by an American-born player and led the Dallas Stars to their only Stanley Cup in the 1998-99 season.
He was drafted first overall in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft from the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL by the Minnesota North Stars franchise, with whom he played 21 of his 22 NHL seasons.
Modano's best offensive season was in the 1993-94 campaign, the first as the Dallas Stars after relocating from Minnesota, when he had 50 goals and 93 points.
"I love this game and as an American born player, I owe a lot to the people in Prince Albert who helped me take my game to the next level," said Modano.
Forsberg joined the NHL after playing five seasons in the Swedish Elite league.
A first-round selection of the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft, Forsberg played 14 seasons and was named rookie of the year in 1995.
Forsberg, a two-time Stanley Cup champion in 1996 and 2001 with the Colorado Avalanche, also won the Hart Trophy in 2003. He won world golds in 1992 and 1998 and Olympic gold in 1994 in Lillehammer.
"Joining Borje Salming and Mats Sundin in the Hall of Fame as the third Swedish member makes it especially gratifying for me," said Forsberg.
Blake scored 40-plus points 12 times in 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Kings, Colorado and San Jose Sharks. He won a Stanley Cup with the Avalanche in 2001.
He is also a member of the International Ice Hockey Federation's elite Triple Gold Club, winning a Stanley Cup, Olympic gold medal and world championship.
Burns, who turned to coaching after a 17-year career as a police officer, began his 14-year NHL career in 1988 with the Montreal Canadiens - winning the Jack Adams Award as the NHL's Coach of the Year in his first season.
He also won the Stanley Cup with the New Jersey Devils in 2003. Burns passed away on Nov. 19, 2010.
McCreary, a former Junior A player, joined the NHL in 1984 and officiated 1,700 regular season games and 282 playoff games, and worked the 1998 and 2002 Olympics before ending his career on April 2, 2011.
The official induction ceremony will be held on Nov. 17 at the Toronto-based Hockey Hall of Fame.
(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue)