Patrick Roy, Dick Duff, Herb Brooks and Harley Hotchkissare the newest member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
The Hall's selection committee made the announcement Wednesday, and the four men will be inducted into the hallin November.
Roy is the all-time wins leader among goaltenders and won four Stanley Cups.
"It was a great career," Roy, 40, said from Quebec during a conference call. "It was fun, every minute of it, and I'm happy to still be involved in hockey today.
"Hockey is my passion."
Duff played parts of 19 NHL seasons with Toronto, Montreal, Los Angeles, Buffalo and the New York Rangers from the 1950s until the early '70s.
"I was almost in tears,"Duff said during the conference call. "This means a lot to me, just like playing hockey meant a lot to me."
Brooks, who died in a car accident in 2003,coached the U.S. national team tothe "Miracle on Ice"gold medal at the 1980 Winter Olympicsand also spent time behind the benchwith fourNHL teams.
Brooks 'proud of this honour': Son
"I just wish my father was still alive to enjoy this moment," said his son, Dan Brooks. "I know he's looking down and is very proud of this honour.He felt the U.S. player could compete at all levels of hockey, especially the NHL."
Hotchkiss was part of the group that moved the Flames to Calgary from Atlanta. He's still a part-owner of the team.
Roy, who popularized the butterfly technique of goaltending and is considered by many to be the greatest goalie of all time, was seen as the only shoo-in for the class of 2006.
"My first year there, I started practising, and I was going butterfly and diving for every puck," he recalled. "[Head coach] Jacques Lemaire told me I needed a mattress and a pillow.
"But I was a believer in the butterfly. The most space you cover is when you are on your knees, and most of the goals scored in the NHL were shots low to the ice."
Known as one of the game's best clutch performers, Roy captured two Stanley Cups with the Montreal Canadiens and two more with the Colorado Avalanche, earning the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP three times. He was named a first-team all-star in 1989, 1990, 1992 and 2002.
"The outcome of every game was so important," he recalled. "Having the chance to chase the Stanley Cup, it was a lot easier for me to concentrate and to be focused in the playoffs than it was in the regular season."
Hisselection to the Hall of Famecaps a terrific year for Roy, who won the Memorial Cup in May as the co-owner, general manager and coach of the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
Ciccarelli snubbed, again
High-scoring centre Dino Ciccarelli was passed over for selection to the Hall for the fourth time. The Sarnia, Ont., native piled up 1,200 points and scored 608 career goals — more than Hall of Famers Maurice Richard, Guy Lafleur, Jean Beliveau, Gilbert Perreault, Darryl Sittler and Bryan Trottier.
Ciccarelli, though,has been dogged by troubles both on and off the ice,including a 10-game suspension in 1988 for hitting Luke Richardson over the head with his stick.
Some also considerCiccarelli's statistics to beinflated by playing much of his career during the NHL's run-and-gun era, with stops in Minnesota, Washington, Detroit, Tampa Bay and Florida before retiring in 1999.
Joining Ciccarelli on the list of players who again failed to garner enough support were Steve Larmer, Kevin Lowe, Glenn Anderson and Ralph Backstrom.
First-time candidatesPavel Bure, Doug Gilmour, Adam Graves, Tom Barrasso, Mike Richter, Phil Housley, Kirk Muller, Ken Daneyko and Kevin Dineen were also passed over.
The selection committee is chaired by Jim Gregory, the NHL's senior vice-president for hockey operations. Members include former coaches Al Arbour and Scotty Bowman, ex-players Stan Mikita and Pat Quinn, and media members Eric Duhatschek and John Davidson.
The induction gala will take place on Nov. 13.