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TORONTO (June 28, 2011) Bill Hay, Chairman and CEO of the Hockey Hall of Fame, Jim Gregory and Pat Quinn, Co-Chairmen of the Hockey Hall of Fame's Selection Committee, announced today Ed Belfour, Doug Gilmour, Mark Howe and Joe Nieuwendyk have been elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in the Player Category. The vote took place today at the annual meeting of the Selection Committee in Toronto.

"The Hockey Hall of Fame is proud to welcome these four hockey legends as Honoured Members," said Jim Gregory. "Their contributions to the game of hockey are well documented and their election to the Hockey Hall of Fame is richly deserved."

Ed Belfour, a native of Carmen, Manitoba, played on five NHL teams from the 1988 to 2007 seasons, winning the Stanley cup in 1999 as a member of the Dallas Stars. A two-time Vezina trophy winner, he also won a gold medal at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

"It is hard to put into words what this means to me," said Belfour. "I would like to thank all of my teammates and people along the way who helped me achieve my hockey dreams."

Doug Gilmour was born in Kingston, Ontario and played Junior hockey nearby as a member of the Cornwall Royals, winning a Memorial Cup in 1981. Doug played 20 years in the NHL, winning a Stanley Cup with the Calgary Flames in 1989.

"This is an overwhelming honour and one that makes me reflect back on the teammates and coaches I have had over years," said Gilmour. "Larry Mavety, who gave me a chance in Tier II hockey and Gord Wood who drafted me into Junior at Cornwall, are two people who were instrumental in helping me establish myself as a player".

Mark Howe played his Junior hockey in Toronto before turning professional with the Houston Aeros in 1973. He stayed in the WHA until the merger with the NHL, playing with the Hartford Whalers, the Philadelphia Flyers and Detroit Red Wings before retiring in 1995.

"I was elated to have this dream come true given that it is a tremendous honour just to have my name mentioned with the upper echelon of hockey," said Howe. "To actually have my name in the Hall of Fame with my Dad will mean so much to my family."

Joe Nieuwendyk played three seasons at Cornell University before turning professional with the Calgary Flames, winning Rookie of the Year in 1988. Joe went on to win the Stanley Cup with Calgary the following season and twice more - with Dallas in 1999 and New Jersey in 2003.

"Every player does their best year after year and strives to play at a very high level," said Nieuwendyk. "I truly love the game and love to compete, and I'm pleased to be honoured by the Hockey Hall of Fame."

The 2011 Induction Celebration will be held on Monday, November 14th at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.


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