Players, coaches and management from the 2004 Memorial Cup Champion Kelowna Rockets will be in Penticton on Friday night as the team will be inducted into the BC Hockey Hall of Fame.
The Rockets will be inducted into the hall alongside former Vancouver Canucks standout goalie Kirk McLean and longtime NHLer and WHL star Pat Price of Nelson.
The Rockets became just the third WHL team to host and win the Memorial Cup in 2004, winning four straight games and outscoring its opponents 7-2 en route to the championship.
The team was also the WHL regular season champions that year. Defenceman Shea Weber (Sicamous) was a tournament all star, goalie Kelly Guard (Prince Albert, SK) was named MVP and Josh Gorges (Kelowna) was winner of the Most Sportsmanlike Player.
Head coach Marc Habscheid was joined on staff by future head coach and now Adirondack Flames head coach Ryan Huska as well as longtime goalie coach Kim Dillabaugh, now a full time goalie coach with the LA Kings.
Along with Weber and Gorges, the blueline also featured rookie Kyle Cumiskey as well as stalwarts Mike Card and Brett Palin.
In net, Guards 13 shutouts in the regular season remains a WHL record.
Up front it was a well-balanced crew with nine Rockets scoring at least 10 goals. Randall Gelech led the team in scoring while other forwards included Blake Comeau, Justin Keller, Tyler Spurgeon and Troy Bodie.
Heading into the Memorial Cup, only two other teams had hosted and won the event. In front of sellout crowds all week in Kelowna, the Rockets won three straight games in the round robin by a combined 7-2 score before beating Gatineau 2-1 in the championship game.
The BC Hockey Hall of Fame 2014 Induction will be held Friday, July 25, 2014 at the South Okanagan Events Centre in Penticton.