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NLL names six Hall of Fame finalists; three may be selected

The Canadian Press

7/16/2012 9:35:47 PM

The National Lacrosse League announced on Monday the six finalists for the league's Hall of Fame class of 2012.

Defencemen Pat Coyle, Chris Driscoll and Regy Thorpe, goaltender Steve Dietrich as well as forward Curt Malawsky may be named to the Hall of Fame. The 1993 Buffalo Bandits are the first team to ever be considered for enshrinement.

Voters may select up to three of the six candidates.

Nominees must be selected on a minimum of 75 per cent of the ballots to reach the next stage of consideration. Of those receiving the necessary votes, the top two vote-getters win induction into the Hall of Fame.

This year's successful nominees will be named next week.

Coyle played 12 seasons in the league, splitting time between the Detroit Turbos, the Ontario Raiders/Toronto Rock and Colorado Mammoth. In that time, his teams made the playoffs 11 times and he won five championships (Toronto 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2003; Colorado 2006).

Driscoll played in the NLL for 19 seasons on Detroit, the Rochester Knighthawks, Buffalo, the New York Saints and Toronto. He also had a great deal of success in the post-season, making the playoffs 12 times and winning three Champion's Cups (Rochester 1997, Toronto 2003 and 2005).

Thorpe played his entire 15-year career with Rochester, winning NLL championships in 1997 and 2007. He captained the Knighthawks to the 2007 NLL title.

Dietrich played 18 seasons in the NLL with the Baltimore Thunder, Detroit, Rochester, Buffalo, the Calgary Roughnecks, the Edmonton Rush and Toronto. In 2006 he won the NLL's MVP Award and had one of the best goaltending seasons in league history, posting a .808 save percentage and a 9.97 goals-against average.

Malawsky had 12 seasons in the league with Rochester, the Vancouver Ravens, San Jose Stealth, Arizona Sting and Calgary. He had 260 goals and 277 assists and won a championship with the Roughnecks in 2009.

The 1993 Buffalo Bandits are the only team in league history to go through the regular season and playoffs undefeated. The Bandits went 8-0 in the regular season, out-scoring its opponents 143-108. The team went 2-0 in the playoffs, including a Championship Game 13-12 win over the Philadelphia Wings.

In 2011, former Toronto Rock goaltender Bob Watson was the only nominee who won induction into the Hall of Fame, having been selected on 86 per cent of the ballots.