Oilers to honour Edmonton hockey legends in Hall of Fame ceremony Thursday

The Edmonton Oilers will honour the inaugural class of their team’s Hall of Fame inductees in a special ceremony on Nov. 3 before hosting the New Jersey Devils.

The Edmonton Oilers Hall of Fame was announced last month. The ceremony will start at 6 p.m. before the pre-game warmup, and a limited number of tickets for the induction ceremony game are on sale now.

Oilers president and chief revenue officer Stew MacDonald said Al Hamilton, Wayne Gretzky, Jari Kurri, Grant Fuhr, Paul Coffey, Mark Messier, Glenn Anderson, Kevin Lowe and Glen Sather will be added automatically, as their numbers have already been recognized in a banner-raising ceremony.

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This year’s new additions are Lee Fogolin and Ryan Smyth.

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“Lee Fogolin was a former captain of the Oilers, a member of the first NHL club in 1979, and was with the team for a number of years and had a huge influence here for Stanley Cups,” said MacDonald.

“He won two Stanley Cups with the Oilers, but [he was] a huge influence on the development of the young players who went on to be the stars and fellow Hall of Famers with the club.”

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“Ryan Smyth, maybe more recent for a lot of our younger fans, but again certainly a heart-and-soul member of the organization. A captain and another player, much like Lee, who left everything on the ice.”

MacDonald said he couldn’t think of two more deserving members to make up the first class.

“Both of those individuals resonate heavily in Oil Country for the style of their play, which was to give it all for their team and their teammates and the fans.”

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Fogolin and Smyth, as well as other inductees and Oilers alumni will be there to see their names permanently enshrined in the ring above the PCL Loge Level at Rogers Place.

“Joining them on the ice will be Al Hamilton, Jari Kurri has flown over from Europe, Paul Coffey will be here, as well as Kevin Lowe,” said MacDonald.

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The inaugural class was selected by a committee consisting of former players Wayne Gretzky, Ron Low, Louie DeBrusk, Chris Joseph and Bruce MacGregor, media members Jim Matheson, Terry Jones, Bob Stauffer and Jason Gregor, and community members Chief Wilton Littlechild and Shannon Szabados.

Each year the committee will be able to choose three new members for the Hall of Fame. MacDonald said to expect the annual Hall of Fame ceremonies to be memorable.

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“As we move into future years there’ll be much more theming around that window with the alumni activities in town and a bit of a homecoming to bring even more alumni back for the celebrations,” he said.

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Fans can listen to the game Thursday live on 630CHED — the Faceoff Show with Reid Wilkins starts at 5:30 p.m. and puck drop is at 7 p.m.

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