Hossa along with forward Jarome Iginla secured the minimum 14 votes from an 18-person panel — that features former players, executives and writers — to be first-ballot hall of famers. The Hall deemed Hossa eligible for induction even though he’s technically an active player under contract with the Coyotes, as he hasn’t played a game in three seasons due to a skin condition which ended his career early.
The decision falls in line with what the Hockey Hall of Fame did for defenseman Chris Pronger, who sat out three seasons with the Flyers and Coyotes due to concussion and eye injuries and was still under contract when he was inducted in 2015.
The induction ceremony is scheduled for Nov. 16 in Toronto, but the date could change depending on when the 2020-21 NHL season begins.
Hossa signed as a free agent with Chicago in July 2009, and played a key role in winning three championships during his eight-season stint with the Blackhawks. He’s also the only player to play in the Cup Final in three straight seasons with three teams (Pittsburgh 2008, Detroit 2009, Chicago 2010).
A forward whose NHL career was cut short because of a skin condition, Hossa scored 1,134 points (525 goals, 609 assists) in 1,309 games with the Senators (1998-2004), Thrashers (2005-08), Penguins (2008), Red Wings (2008-09) and Blackhawks (2009-17). He scored at least 30 goals in eight seasons and at least 40 goals three times.
Hossa also was a major player on the international stage for Slovakia’s national team. He racked up 22 points (13 goals, nine assists) in 19 games at the junior level and 70 points (31 goals, 39 points) in 76 senior-level games. He also had one goal in six games for Team Europe during their silver-medal run at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.
Hossa joins Doug Wilson as former Blackhawks to be named to the 2020 class. The duo are the first former Chicago players to be inducted into the Hall since Phil Housley, who scored 68 points (21 goals, 47 assists) in 137 games from 2001-03 with the Blackhawks near the end of his storied 21-year career, was enshrined in 2015.