Former Bruins coach Burns elected into Hockey Hall

Former Bruins coach Burns elected into Hockey Hall
June 23, 2014, 4:30 pm
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The Boston Bruins was just one of the stops for legendary NHL head coach Pat Burns during a colorful hockey career, but he’s remembered fondly in Boston on a day when the late hockey coach was deservedly inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Hall of Fame class was announced on Monday afternoon, and Burns was elected as a builder along with a star-studded class of Dominik Hasek, Mike Modano, Peter Forsberg and Rob Blake. Longtime referee Bill McCreary was also inducted into the Hall as a builder alongside Burns.  

The gruff, outspoken Burns won his third Jack Adams trophy while leading the 1997-98 version of the Boston Bruins in his first season in Boston, and helped shepherd 19­-year-old Sergei Samsonov and 18-year-old Joe Thornton in their rookie NHL seasons.

"On behalf of the Boston Bruins I would like to congratulate the family of Pat Burns on his election into the Hockey Hall of Fame," Bruins President Cam Nelly said in a statement sent out by the Bruins. "Pat had an outstanding career in hockey, and we are very happy to see him rewarded with this great honor."

Burns, who coached the New Jersey Devils to the 2003 Stanley Cup title, retired from coaching in 2005 and died of cancer five years later at the young age of 58 in 2010. The police officer-turned-hockey coach won the Jack Adams Trophy as the NHL's top coach with three different teams: Toronto, Montreal and in Boston.

A Facebook campaign was started in 2010 to get Burns enshrined into the Hall of Fame while he was still alive, but Burns was a near miss for induction in the previous four years until this summer.