Tom Barrasso: “No one can come here alone”
In his induction speech, Tom Barrasso reflected on the opportunities and people that led him to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
“No one comes here alone. They need love and support,” the goalkeeper said. And most importantly, you need opportunities from people along the journey. And I want to share this night and this honor with those who have supported me and given me the opportunity to be here in this room with you tonight. ”
He began by thanking his parents, Tom and Lucy, who adopted him, and his brother and sister.
“They loved us and supported us in everything we did. My parents didn’t know anything about hockey except that the arena was a good place for kids.” Barrasso said.
When the arena went bankrupt, Barrasso said his parents became co-owners to keep it afloat.
“They’ve become hockey enthusiasts. They love going to the arena and seeing the joy it brings to everyone who skates there,” the 53-year-old said. “I started working at that arena the summer I was 12 years old, sweeping the floors and cleaning the restrooms. To this day, I’ve never worked anywhere other than a hockey arena.”
Barrasso also expressed his gratitude to his teammates with whom he played over the years, including in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres, Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, Carolina Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs and St. Louis Blues. expressed.
“I would like to thank my long-time teammates with whom I have shared great successes and failures. Epic games of cards and golf. We have an unbreakable bond and shared moments in every game,” he said. said. Our lives cannot be imitated, and we are grateful to you all. ”
Barrasso said no matter what skills he has, he needs to be given a chance. He named three members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Scotty Bowman, who presented Barrasso with the Hall of Fame plaque, was the man who selected the American high school player with the fifth pick in the 1983 NHL Draft. He started the Sabers’ season opener four months later.
“My career was going well,” Barrasso said.
In 1988, Pittsburgh Penguins general manager and Hall of Fame goaltender Tony Esposito traded there for two-time Stanley Cup champion Barrasso.
“Tony believed in me and believed I could be a difference maker. Two years later, the Penguins were Stanley Cup champions. I’ll be forever grateful to Tony for giving me the chance. My life has really changed. “
The last person he mentioned was Pittsburgh’s other general manager, Craig Patrick. Barrasso’s father died in 2000, and his daughter Ashley suffered a recurrence of childhood cancer.
At the time, he said, hockey was the furthest thing from his mind. He took his year off and when he decided to return, he was selected to represent the United States at the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics. Patrick was the GM of that team.
“Being an Olympian is truly the highlight of my life, right up there with winning the Stanley Cup twice,” Barrasso said. “These three people believed in me and took action, and I am grateful for the opportunity they gave me.” – Sean P. Rourke