Holmgren leads class into U.S. Hockey Hall

NHL News

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Longtime NHL player, coach and executive Paul Holmgren, retired forward Peter McNab and broadcaster Stan Fischler make up the 2021 class of the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame.

USA Hockey announced the class Thursday. Holmgren, McNab and Fischler are set to be inducted along with the class of 2020 at a ceremony in December.

Holmgren played for, coached and most recently ran the front office for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was an assistant coach when the U.S. won the World Cup of Hockey in 1996 and was part of the American management team at the event in 2016.

“I am deeply humbled and enormously grateful to be bestowed this honor by USA Hockey,” Holmgren said in a statement. “Growing up in Minnesota, and reflecting as far back as I can remember, United States hockey is a program that I have looked up to and always strived to be a part of. I am incredibly proud to have had the fortune to wear and represent the Red, White, and Blue during each and every occasion I have been asked.”

McNab played 14 NHL seasons with the Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils.

Fischler was a staple of hockey broadcasts in the New York area for decades.

“I’m overwhelmed,” Fischler told ESPN on Thursday. “From the day in 1945 when I went to a Rovers game at MSG, I found that there was a lot of white space on the roster page. Instinctively, I wrote my version of the game and, literally, never stopped writing hockey after that.

“At age 89, I’m often asked how come I’m still writing hockey. My answer is that passion never has left. Every morning, even before coffee, I start writing some kind of hockey ’cause it comes natural. Like finding a good lead or a funny turn of phrase keeps my half-Hungarian brain thinking. Why don’t I stop? Because, to me, rest is rust.”

Fischler, who publishes a daily newsletter called The Fischler Report, said “when it comes to hockey, I still feel as if I’m 14 years old about to go to old MSG and see three games. Two in the afternoon and Rangers at night.”

This class will be enshrined together with the class of 2020 at a formal celebration in December. Last year’s class featured NCAA coaches Dean Blais and Jerry York, NHL player Tony Granato and USWNT player Jenny Potter, one of only three U.S. women’s players to compete in four Olympics.

Information from ESPN’s Greg Wyshynski and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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