John Tavares and Tracey Kelusky will also be enshrined into the Class of 2016 at NLL Hall of Fame Ceremony on Sept. 27 in Toronto
Oakville, ON – The National Lacrosse League today announced Josh Sanderson, John Tavares and Tracey Kelusky have been voted into the NLL Hall of Fame as the Class of 2016. The trio of inductees, which marks the league’s largest member class since 2010, will be enshrined at the NLL Hall of Fame Ceremony on Tuesday, Sept. 27 at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre in Oakville.
“No brainer,” was the reaction from Rock President, Owner and GM Jamie Dawick when asked about Sanderson’s induction into the NLL Hall of Fame. “He’s going to go down as one of the greatest to ever play this game. Josh, more than anyone, proved that you don’t have to be a monster to be a superstar in the game of lacrosse. His NLL Hall of Fame induction is an honour he has earned and truly deserves.”
Sanderson spent 19 seasons in the league with Toronto (2005-2008 & 2012-2016), Rochester (1998-1999), Albany (2000-2003), San Jose (2004), Calgary (2008-2010) and Boston (2011). Won two Champion’s Cups (2005 & 2009) and retired fourth in NLL career scoring with 1,357 points (449+908). Ranked second in NLL history in games played (268) and assists (908), fifth in goals (449) and 10th in loose balls (1,216). Finished seventh on NLL all-time playoff scoring list with 100 points (35+65) in 23 games. Nine-time All-Pro (2000, 2002-2006, 2009-2010 & 2015) recorded 60 or more points in every season from 2002 to 2015 including five 100-plus point campaigns.
“It’s really an incredible statement and testament to the staying power of our players and League when this outstanding trio get inducted into the National Lacrosse League Hall of Fame and all continue to work as executives in our League,” said NLL Commissioner Nick Sakiewicz. “Tracey Kelusky, Josh Sanderson and John Tavares were all dynamic players on the floor, and they continue to serve the National Lacrosse League in their post-playing careers as coaches and team executives. It’s an honour and very important to have former players find post-playing careers with our League and each of these men have made immeasurable contributions to the sport, and continue to do so in guiding the next generation of NLL players. It’s fitting that each will now be forever immortalized in the NLL Hall of Fame.”
Tavares played an NLL-record 24 seasons in the league, all with Buffalo (1992-2015). Retired as NLL’s all-time leader in games played (306), goals (815), assists (934) and points (1,749), and ranked second in loose balls (2,169). Four-time Champion’s Cup winner (1992-1993, 1996 & 2008) leads NLL all-time playoff list in games played (38), goals (84), assists (116) and points (200). Scored 30 or more goals in 16 seasons and had 80 or more points in 12 seasons, including 10-straight years from 2000 to 2009, with four 100-plus point campaigns. Three-time NLL Most Valuable Player (1994, 2000 & 2001) was named NLL All-Pro a league-record 19 times (1993-2009 & 2011-2012).
Kelusky played 14 seasons in the league with Calgary (2003-2010), where he served as team captain and won two Champion’s Cups (2004 & 2009), Columbus (2001), Montreal (2002), Buffalo (2011-2013) and Philadelphia (2014). He retired with the 11th-most goals (383) and points (823) in league history and 13th-most games played (195) along with 886 loose balls. Won the 2001 NLL Rookie of the Year award and 2007 Sportsmanship Award. The five-time All-Pro (2001-2005) forward ranks 10th all-time in NLL career playoff goals (37). Finished his career second in Roughnecks franchise history in goals, assists and points and had 50 or more points in 10 of his 14 seasons in the league.
The five finalists for the Class of 2016 were selected last month by the league’s Hall of Fame Committee. The other two finalists were Kevin Finneran and Gavin Prout, who automatically returned from last year’s ballot.
Hall of Fame ballots were cast by the teams, current members of the NLL Hall of Fame and the league’s senior media members. Voters were able to select up to three of the five nominees on the ballot. To win induction into the Hall of Fame, nominees must be selected on a minimum of 75 percent of the overall ballots cast or 75 percent of ballots cast by Hall of Fame members.
Tavares was voted in unanimously by receiving votes on 100% of the overall ballots, followed by Sanderson (77%), Kelusky (71%), Finneran (26%) and Prout (23%). Kelusky won induction by receiving votes on 75% of the ballots cast by Hall of Fame members.
The NLL Hall of Fame was established in 2006. The 24 current members are:
Class of 2006 (Founding Members)
Class of 2007
Class of 2008
Class of 2009
Class of 2010
Class of 2011
Class of 2012
Class of 2013
Class of 2014
Class of 2015
Members of Media Recognized by Hall of Fame
Tom Borrelli (2007)
Neil Stevens (2008)
Toronto Rock season tickets are now on sale for as low as $195. For more information or to purchase season tickets, please call 416-596-3075 or visit torontorock.com.