NHL  > General NHL  > Hall of Fame Class of 2011: Chris Chelios
August 31, 2011, 03:27 PM
NCAA champion is one of greatest American hockey players of all-time

Halls of Fame are calling Chris Chelios. This week Chelios becomes the 11th former Badger men's hockey player inducted into the University of Wisconsin Athletics Hall of Fame. The ceremony marks the first of two this fall for Chelios, who also goes into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame later this year at a ceremony in Chicago.

The two inductions won't mark the last hall of fame for Chelios, either, as the California resident will wait two more years before he becomes eligible for the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. His credentials make his induction all but guaranteed.

A two-year member of Wisconsin and its hockey program, the defenseman helped the Badgers to the 1983 NCAA Championship as a member of the all-tournament. Finishing with 22 goals and 75 assists in two seasons at Wisconsin, Chelios would later be named to the American Hockey Coaches Association All-Time West Team and the NCAA's 50th anniversary team in 1997, then the WCHA's top 50 players in 50 years in 2001-02. Following his college career, Chelios went on to become a four-time Olympian, three-time Olympic captain, three-time Stanley Cup Champion, 11-time NHL All-Star and three-time Norris Trophy winner, which is awarded to the NHL's best defenseman.

The all-time leader among Americans and defensemen in NHL games played, he also finished his career as the second-oldest player in league history, still skating at age 48 during the 2009-10 season. Chelios broke into the NHL following the 1984 Olympics with the Montreal Canadians, where he spent 1984-90 as a member of the sport's most storied franchise.

While there, he earned recognition on the NHL All-Rookie Team in 1985, while also skating in his first of 11 NHL All-Star Games that season. He won his first Norris Trophy and the first for a U.S. born skater while with Montreal in 1989 when the team finished as Stanley Cup runners-up, before getting traded to the Chicago Blackhawks one season later after being named team captain.

In Chicago, Chelios would win two more Norris Trophies, while helping his team to the 1992 Stanley Cup finals. Named Blackhawks team captain in 1995, he held that distinction until 1999, when he was dealt to the Detroit Red Wings.
In Detroit, Chelios tacked on two more Stanley Cups, beating Carolina in 2002 and Pittsburgh in 2008. He played for the Red Wings from 1999 to 2009, before finishing his professional career with Atlanta during the 2009-10 season.

His international resume is unprecedented. The first to participate in the Olympic ice hockey tournament 22 years after first appearing, he captained Team USA three times, including to a silver medal at the 2002 games in Salt Lake City, Utah as a member of the all-tournament squad. He also stood out in other international competition, including as an all-tournament defenseman for Team USA in the country's 1996 World Cup of Hockey victory.
September 13, 2011  07:12 PM ET

Well deserved for sure.


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