Dave Andreychuk scored 640 goals over the course of 23 NHL seasons for the Buffalo Sabres, Toronto Maple Leafs, New Jersey Devils, Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning. And now, after a nine-year wait, the NHL’s all-time power-play goal leader (274) will finally get his place among the greatest to ever play the game in the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Andreychuk will join Paul Kariya, Mark Recchi, Teemu Selanne, Danielle Goyette, Clare Drake and Jeremy Jacobs as part of the Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2017.
“The years that I have waited make no difference to me,” Andreychuk said. “The numbers and what I had done, there’s not much you could do but sit and wait. You think about this day that’s going to happen, you think you’re prepared for it, and you’re really not. I got the call at 2 o’clock, and I was just overwhelmed.”
One of the nicest guys to ever lace up skates, Andreychuk is 14th on the NHL’s all-time scoring list, 28th in total points (1,338) and 31st, all-time, in game-winning goals (77). A testament to a lengthy, 1,639-game career that began in 1982, the Hamilton, Ontario native won a well-deserved Stanley Cup with the Lightning in 2004.
Meet the HHOF Class of 2017. Dave Andreychuk, Danielle Goyette, Paul Kariya, Mark Recchi, Teemu Selanne, Clare Drake and Jeremy Jacobs. pic.twitter.com/fzwGJUZVZv
— Hockey Hall of Fame (@HockeyHallFame) June 26, 2017
Teemu Selanne didn’t have to wait nearly as long to be enshrined in the Hall. “The Finnish Flash,” who took the NHL by storm as a rookie with 76 goals in 1992-93, was a first-ballot inductee after tallying 684 goals (11th) and 1,457 points (15th) for the Winnipeg Jets, San Jose Sharks, Colorado Avalanche and Anaheim Ducks, whom he hoisted a Stanley Cup with in 2007.
After being selected in the first round, 10th overall by the Jets in 1990, Selanne was a goal-scoring machine who led or tied the league in goals three seasons, including back-to-back campaigns in 1997-98 and 1998-99. His 255 power-play goals rank third, all-time, behind Andreychuk and Brett Hull.
Selanne will have company in the Class of 2017 as former teammate Paul Kariya, who lined up alongside him for the Mighty Ducks from 1995-2001, and later, the Avalanche in 2003-04, also got the call from the Hall.
Kariya, a highly-touted Canadian from Vancouver, British Columbia, was selected fourth overall in 1993 NHL Entry Draft after a standout collegiate career at the University of Maine. Kariya recorded 989 points in 989 career-games, including 402 goals, for the Ducks, Avalanche, Nashville Predators and St. Louis Blues. He is also a two-time Lady Byng Trophy winner, taking home honors in 1995-96 and 1996-97.
Kariya carries rare distinction as one of nine NHL players to post a point-per-game average since entering the league in 1993-94, joining Sidney Crosby, Peter Forsberg, Evgeni Malkin, Joe Sakic, Jaromir Jagr, Alexander Ovechkin, Patrick Kane and Ilya Kovalchuk (minimum 700 games played).
Recchi is a three-time Stanley Cup champion, winning championships with three different teams including the Pittsburgh Penguins (1991), Carolina Hurricanes (2006) and Boston Bruins (2011).
Quietly among the league leaders throughout his 22-year NHL career despite not being drafted by Pittsburgh until the fourth round in 1988, Recchi is 20th all-time in goals (577) and 12th all-time in total points (1,533) over the course of 1,652 games that also included stops with the Montreal Canadiens, Tampa Bay Lightning and Atlanta Thrashers.
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Main Image: Captain Dave Andreychuk #25 of the Tampa Bay Lightning is presented with the Stanley Cup by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman after the victory over the Calgary Flames in Game Seven of the NHL Stanley Cup Finals on June 7, 2004 at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Florida. The Lightning defeated the Flames 2-1. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)