The Detroit News posted a staff/wire report in which former Red Wings Vaclav Nedomansky and Jim Rutherford reflected upon their naming to the Hockey Hall of Fame’s 2019 induction class:
Nedomansky helped Czechoslovakia earn the 1968 Olympic silver medal and the 1972 world championship.
He was the first player to defect from the other side of the Iron Curtain, started in the World Hockey Association and went on to record 278 points in 421 NHL games with the Red Wings, St. Louis Blues and Rangers.
“When I made the decision in ‘74 to finish my dream, I jumped right into it and I’m so happy I did that,” Nedomansky said.
Rutherford, a longtime general manager of Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes and Pittsburgh Penguins, built teams that won the Cup in 2006, 2016 and 2017 and will be inducted in the builders’ category.
He is one of two GMs in NHL history to win the Cup with two different teams. Rutherford, who played 10 years in Detroit with a 97-165-43 record and a 3.69 GAA in 314 games, recalled going to the Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Toronto as a kid and how surreal it is to become a part of it.
“It was day where I thought, ‘Man, this is really special,’” Rutherford said. “Now here I am.”