The 2013 Hockey Hall of Fame induction ceremony was its usual mix of heartfelt remembrances, humor, honoring of family and friends and other expected emotions from inductees Chris Chelios, Brendan Shanahan, Scott Niedermayer, the late Fred Shero and Geraldine Heaney, a.k.a. the female Bobby Orr.
But once in a while, the speeches went interesting places. The eyes got a little misty when Shanahan honored his late father, who never had a chance to watch him play, at the end of his speech:
He also mentioned his trade request from the Hartford Whalers in an interesting peek behind the curtain of a tumultuous part of his career.
Chelios’ speech was memorable as he addressed the NHL’s labor wars that he fought so passionately, claiming that “nobody won” and never getting around to mentioning Gary Bettman’s name.
Niedermayer wasn’t one for controversy, obviously, but it was interesting to hear him put over Hall of Fame snub Pat Burns, saying “it was a special moment getting to see him realize his dream of winning the Stanley Cup.”
Speaking of snubs, Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ray Shero’s speech about his late father’s innovation as a coach – Russian influenced – and how happy he would be to part of “hockey’s greatest team.” Also, that he claimed to be the first New York Ranger with a public library card.
Finally, Heaney had one of the best lines of the night in Toronto to her husband: "I want to apologize for all the heat you've been taking at work because your wife has a harder shot than you, but wasn't it worth it in the end?"