TORONTO, ON. — The changing face of Canadian sport will be in the spotlight, on October 25, 2007, at a gala dinner in Toronto, with the induction of six athletes and two builders into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame.
Hockey’s Mike Bossy and Cassie Campbell, pro football’s Doug Flutie, Olympic wrestler Daniel Igali, cross-country skiing Olympian Beckie Scott and Major League Baseball’s Larry Walker, enter the Sports Hall as athletes. Sport pioneers Sam Jacks and Dr. Robert Steadward will be entering as builders.
Sam Jacks is the inventor of the sport of ringette and floor hockey, now played by thousands of all ages around the world. Dr. Robert Steadward is recognized as the man whose efforts spearheaded the growth of sport for the disabled from virtually ignored recreation to world centre stage in the Paralympic Games.
In his decade-long career with the New York Islanders, Bossy was perhaps the game’s consummate sharp-shooter, setting at nine the NHL record for most consecutive seasons of 50 or more goals, and one of the only players ever to have scored 60 or more goals five times. Bossy was the NHL’s rookie of the year and won three Lady Byng Trophies, and saw his sweater retired by the Islanders.
Cassie Campbell, national team member from 1994 through 2006 and a pioneer in the growth and development of her sport, becomes the first women’s ice hockey player honored by the Hall. She captained the team from 2002 to her retirement following the team’s second straight Olympic gold medal in 2006.
Doug Flutie, pro football’s Little Engine That Could, won U.S. college football’s Heisman Trophy in 1984 and found a home in Canadian football in 1991. In Calgary, B.C. and Toronto, his dazzling play brought six league outstanding player awards, three Grey Cups and, in a 2006 poll by TSN, the No. 1 spot on the all-time CFL Top 50 players. Doug is the first non-Canadian to be inducted into the Sports Hall.
Nigerian-born Daniel Igali, Olympic gold medal winner in 69kg freestyle wrestling in 2000, did not return to his country following the 1994 Commonwealth Games because of political unrest. Instead, he made his home in Surrey, B.C. and became a proud Canadian and one of the country’s best-known amateur athletes.
Beckie Scott was the first North American woman to win an Olympic medal in cross-country skiing. Her third-place finish in the five-kilometer in the 2002 Games was raised to gold more than two years later when both skiers who finished ahead of her were disqualified for using a performance-enhancing drug. In 2006 she again climbed onto the Olympic podium with silver in the Team Sprint. She finished the 2006 season in second position overall in the Women’s FIS World Cup standings – an unprecedented achievement for a North American. Ms. Scott is a member of the World Anti-Doping Agency and an athlete member of the International Olympic Committee.
Larry Walker signed with the Montreal Expos in 1984 as a non-drafted free agent and quickly became one of the game’s premier attractions. Shipped to the Colorado Rockies by the Expos in 1995, he won the National League MVP award in 1997, the Lou Marsh Trophy in 1998 and was a perennial all-star and Golden Glove award winner.
Canada's Sports Hall of Fame recognizes and honours Canada's sports heroes. It is the Hall's mission to inspire Canadian identity and national pride by telling the compelling stories of those outstanding achievements that make up Canada's sports history. The addition of these athletes and builders brings the total number of Honoured Members in Canada's Sports Hall of Fame to 489.