Can a Hall of Fame player come out of retirement and play again

In (at least) North America it’s a tradition to induct the very best players of a league who have not been playing for a certain amount of years. All major leagues in North America: NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL practice this tradition.

2 Answers

Yes. Three NHL players have done this:

  • Geordie Howe: inducted 1972, last played in the NHL in the 1979-80 season.
  • Guy Lafleur: inducted 1988, last played in the NHL in the 1990-91 season.
  • Mario Lemieux: inducted 1997, last played in the NHL in the 2005-06 season.

In terms of your question, it’s worth noting that both Howe and Lemieux were inducted into the Hall of Fame without waiting the normal 3 year period.

As for “Hall of Fame status”, that doesn’t mean anything in terms of actually playing the game, so the question as to whether it would be “suspended” or not isn’t really relevant.

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