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U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame set to induct Chris Drury

BOSTON -- Chris Drury left a legacy of winning, pride and determination at most of his hockey homes. He'll be honored for it by his country Thursday night.

The U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame will induct Drury and three other members of its class of 2015 during a sold-out ceremony in the Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel. The event is scheduled to be streamed live starting at 7 p.m. at www.ushockeyhalloffame.com.

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Drury represented the United States at eight major international events, including the 2002, 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics. He helped the Americans earn silver medals in 2002 and 2010. Drury also played for U.S. teams in the World Cup of Hockey (2004), world championships (1997, 1998, 2004) and world junior championships (1996).

The Connecticut native is the only person to win the Hobey Baker Award as college hockey's best player (Boston University, 1998) and follow it up with the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie (Colorado, 1999). He helped the Avalanche win the Stanley Cup in 2001 while scoring 11 goals in 23 postseason games.

After a one-season stay in Calgary, he arrived in Buffalo via trade during the summer of 2003. He teamed with Daniel Briere to turn the Sabres into a contender that captured the attention and hearts of Western New York sports fans. Buffalo reached back-to-back Eastern Conference finals in 2006 and 2007.

Drury played 234 regular-season games during his three seasons in Buffalo, recording 85 goals, 104 assists and 189 points. He led the team during his stay with 38 power-play goals, six short-handed tallies and 16 game-winners. He added 17 goals, 31 points and four game-winners during 34 playoff games.

"I’m the first one to admit that he taught me a lot," Briere, who shared co-captaincy honors with Drury, said during the Sabres' visit to Philadelphia this season. "I learned how to become a pro. I learned from him how to take my game to the next level, how to be a guy that wanted to make a difference. He’s so clutch, and I learned that from him for the most part.

"It was a perfect fit. That’s how I feel. Chris and I, I always felt that we were on the same wave length. We agreed on everything. It was easy being co-captains with him. There was never any jealousy one way or the other. We always had each other’s back. I wanted more for him, and I felt the same way from him towards me.

"It was an honor to share that with such a great player, clutch guy, a guy who had the Stanley Cup and everything he had won in his life."

Drury spent his final four seasons with the New York Rangers before retiring because of injury in 2011. He finished his NHL career with 255 goals and 615 points in 892 games, plus 47 goals (including 17 game-winners) and 89 points in 135 playoff appearances.

Drury will be inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame along with longtime NHL defenseman Mathieu Schneider, women's hockey great Angela Ruggiero and executive Ron DeGregorio. Buffalo native Jeremy Jacobs, the longtime owner of the Boston Bruins, will receive the Lester Patrick Trophy for contributions to hockey in the United States.

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