As first broken by the Score Ticker twitter account (tweet embedded below) – after six kicks at the can and six misses – former Canucks sniper Pavel "The Russian Rocket" Bure, one of the most electrifying players in NHL history, will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame this year. He’ll join Burnaby born Joe Sakic, former Vancouver Canucks power forward Mats Sundin and newly minted Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates in the 2012 induction class. That’s some fine company to go in with!
Here’s the tweet that first informed Canucks fans of the news:
Joe Sakic, Adam Oates, Mats Sundin and Pavel Bure have been elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
— theScoreTicker (@theScoreTicker) June 26, 2012
It has since been confirmed by multiple sources that Pavel Bure is a 7th ballot Hall of Famer. Whatever the story behind Bure’s previous snubs, this honour is long overdue and well deserved.
Read past the jump.
In Bure’s Canucks career he played 428 games, scored 254 goals (fifth all time in franchise history) and added 224 assists for 478 points. Those 478 points are good for 7th place on the all-time list of Canucks franchise scorers, though he has the highest point-per-game rate among all Canucks skaters who played more than a full season with the team (1.12 points-per-game). He still holds the record for the most goals scored by any Canucks skater in a single season with 60 goals, a mark he hit in two consecutive seasons (92-93 and 93-94).
In addition to those team records, he is third in all-time hat-tricks scored by a Canuck (one hat-trick behind both Tony Tanti and Daniel Sedin), and still holds the all-time franchise mark in short-handed goals with 24 – 8 more than the next closest player (Alex Burrows has 16). On the playoff leaderboard, he is tied for the franchise record in playoff goals with 34, though he played roughly half of the playoff games (60 to 118) of Trevor Linden, with whom he shares that record. Probably his most impressive record however, came after he was traded from Vancouver to Florida. In the 2000-2001 season, Pavel Bure contributed 29.5% of a single teams goals, scoring 59 that season.
Pavel Bure is fifth in all-time goals goals per game, and the third best goal-scorer of the modern era by that metric (behind only Mike Bossy and Mario Lemieux). Bure led the league in scoring four times, and broke the fifty goal mark on five occasions. While his Canucks tenure ended on a sour note, Bure will always be fondly remembered in Vancouver for being the most talented and exciting player to ever wear a Canucks jersey, and for his absolute and unmitigated dominance during the team’s cinderella run to the Cup Finals in 1994…
It remains to be seen whether or not Bure will enter the Hall of Fame in a Canucks jersey, but were he to do so, he’d be the first Canuck in the Hall of Fame. While this honour helps to clear up his complicated legacy at the league level, it’s imperative that the Canucks find a way to celebrate his Hall of Fame career this season. As I wrote earlier today, it’s arguable that he shouldn’t have his jersey retired based on the team’s established in-house standard for that honour, but his exemption from the Ring of Honour is a travesty that cheapens the accomplishment. Hopefully the Canucks can solve this issue over the course of the summer.