DETROIT — Former Wing Brendan Shanahan will have to wait at least one more year to get into the Hockey Hall of Fame after not being elected Tuesday in his first year of eligibility.
However, former Wings center Adam Oates was elected, along with Pavel Bure, Mats Sundin and Joe Sakic.
“I don’t answer to any surprise questions because all those guys are obviously deserving of getting into the Hall of Fame,” Chris Chelios said when asked if he was surprised Shanahan was not voted in.
Oates, who was also hired as head coach of the Washington Capitals on Tuesday, had 341 goals and 1,079 assists in 1,337 games with Detroit, St. Louis, Boston, Washington, Philadelphia, Anaheim, and Edmonton.
“When I got traded I was really upset,” Oates said about the Wings dealing him to St. Louis. “Detroit was my first team. It was heartbreaking. But it gave me the chance to go to St. Louis and play with Brett (Hull) and really establish myself in the league.”
Oates has been eligible since 2007 to get added to the HOF.
“I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t,” Oates said when asked if he looks forward to election day since being passed over so many times. “Maybe not as much as previous years, but I knew it was coming around and today was the day.”
Many thought Shanahan, who won three Stanley Cups with the Wings, was a shoo-in this year. He had 656 goals (13th all-time) and 1,354 points in 1,524 games over 21 seasons.
“You can only put so many in during a year,” Chelios said. “I don’t know how they pick them to be honest with you.”
While competing for Team Canada, Shanahan also won a gold medal at the 1994 World Championships, 2002 Winter Olympics, and a 1991 Canada Cup championship, which makes him a member of the elite Triple Gold Club.