Mark Recchi was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame Monday after waiting through three years of eligibility.
He will join Teemu Selanne, Paul Kariya, Dave Andreychuk, Danielle Goyette, Clare Drake and Jeremy Jacobs in the Hall of Fame's class of 2017.
And with his pending induction in mind, what can you say about the illustrious career of Recchi that hasn’t already been stated?
Began his career in Pittsburgh and wins a Stanley Cup in his third year?
Gets traded to the Flyers for Rick Tocchet, and proceeds to play in Philadelphia for a few years.
Goes to Montreal, comes back to the Flyers, and twice has long runs here before heading to Carolina where he’s a pivotal player for Peter Laviolette’s Cup-winning Hurricanes.
Finally, he finishes off his career in Boston where he wins his third Cup, ironically, the year after his Bruins blew a 3-0 series lead to Laviolette’s Flyers in the playoffs.
Only seven players have ever won three Cups with three different teams.
Oh, did we mention he has a ring in Penguins management from 2016 as a player development coach and will get another ring this fall after the Pens' second consecutive Cup? Five rings!
He also was promoted this month to director of player development.
Recchi’s longevity, desire and ability to play at a consistently high level wherever he went is a major reason why he is entering the Hall of Fame.
He should have been voted in last year with Eric Lindros.
“I can’t thank the Selection Committee enough for this recognition,” Recchi said in a statement. “It’s an incredible feeling and the icing on the cake after 22 years of playing the game.”
The stocky, 5-foot-10, 195-pound right wing from Kamloops, B.C., played 1,652 NHL games, scored 577 goals and amassed 1,533 points during a brilliant 22-year career.
“When Mark Recchi walked into a dressing room, I knew as a teammate, I was getting a highly competitive, high-character, extremely generous and passionate person,” said Tocchet, who picked up his second Cup recently as an assistant coach with Mike Sullivan’s Penguins.
Tocchet and Recchi were Flyers teammates for three seasons.
Recchi spent a total of 10 years in Flyers orange and black where he was a point-a-game player – 627 points in 602 games.
“On behalf of the Philadelphia Flyers, I am very pleased to hear the news that Mark Recchi will be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame,” said Flyers President Paul Holmgren. “Mark was an important member of the Flyers organization and contributed to much of our success during both his tenures with the club, which included two trips to the Conference Finals. He continues to hold the club’s record for most points in a single season and was a very dedicated member of our team. He was an outstanding player and this honor is well deserved.”
“Mark was a great team guy and displayed leadership,” said another former teammate, Craig Berube. “A very good passer with the puck and very smart on the ice.”
Recchi, now 49-years-old, averaged nearly 20 minutes a night ice time his entire career, too.
“His leadership was valuable to the teams he won Stanley Cups with,” said Penguins GM Jim Rutherford, who traded for Recchi at the deadline in Carolina in 2006.
“Mark played well both on offense and defense in all situations.”
Ken Hitchcock coached Recchi in Kamloops and in Philadelphia. Hitchcock will tell you his 2003-04 Flyers might have been the greatest team he ever coached in the NHL that didn’t win a Cup.
“Winning follows Mark,” Hitchcock said at the NHL draft this weekend. “He was a very competitive player when it mattered most. He really adjusted his game and his roles on teams. Mark won at every level and that’s not an accident.”
Recchi’s selection completes a perfect legacy – an impact player wherever he went and one who won multiple Cups.
“A real champion,” Rutherford said.