Brodeur Goes into Canadian Sports Hall; Smith to Play in Canada-Russia Series

Martin Brodeur, three-time Stanley Cup champ, four-time Vezina Trophy winner, Calder Trophy winner, the NHL’s all-time wins and shutouts leader, Olympic gold medalist and Hockey Hall of Famer, has yet another set of accolades to add to his list. He was enshrined into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame earlier this morning in Toronto.

The Devils great was also awarded the Order of Sport in Canada.

According to the Hall of Fame’s website, Brodeur went in with other members of the Class of 2019, which included: freestyle skier Alexandre Bilodeau, para Nordic skier Colette Bourgonje, builder Doug Mitchell, rowing builder Guylaine Bernier, female hockey player Jayna Hefford, swimmer Vicki Keith and water polo player Waneek Horn-Miller.

In an interview on the Devils’ official app and website with Amanda Stein, Brodeur said “it’s a great honor” and that he does not really consider himself a “big athlete” due to him playing a team sport and not an individual sport like many of the others inducted.

On the topic of international competition, he told Stein that the Team Canada jersey was special to him because of his father. Denis Brodeur, of course, represented Canada in the 1956 Olympics. Brodeur told Stein that he did not really think the Olympics were in his future due to being a professional athlete. When the NHL let its players go to the Olympics, it was a dream come true for him.

In his conversation with Stein, the former Devils netminder also touched on being a recipient of the Order of Sport in Canada. This award recognizes athletes who have given back to their communities and Marty mentioned that, as a professional hockey player, making so much money, you need to give back. He said that he gave back in his playing days and tries to give back today. He clarified that his work is done, not just in New Jersey, but also in his hometown of Montreal.

Marty joked in his induction speech that “as a hockey player, you don’t really think about sports. It is a game.” He mentioned that “winning is all fun, but what you do for your fans is more important” as he discussed working with kids who were and are fans of his.

In other Devils news, Ty Smith will be representing the Western Hockey League (and serve as one of their captains) during the Canada-Russia Series in November. This is according to a report by Peter Robinson on the Devils’ official app.

The Canada-Russia series, which pits an all-star team from each of the three Canadian Hockey League major junior leagues (the WHL, OHL and QMJHL) against a touring team of Russian junior all-stars, serves as a bit of a tune-up for the World Junior Championship that takes place the week after Christmas. Smith plays for the Spokane Chiefs of the WHL.

On the topic of the World Juniors, Mark Hunter, co-owner of the London Knights of the OHL and general manager of Team Canada, was quoted by Robinson as saying that “Ty Smith is going to be a big part of our team. He and (Detroit Red Wings prospect) Joe Veleno were there last year and wouldn’t have liked how it ended. We’ll be counting on them to lead us.”

For his part, Smith told Robinson: “It was still a great experience, I’m looking forward to getting another opportunity especially with what happened last year. We weren’t happy with the result.” (Canada lost in overtime to Finland in the quarterfinals and ended up finishing sixth in a tournament that is extremely scrutinized in the nation.)

Congratulations to both Martin Brodeur and Ty Smith on these well-deserved honors.