Hockey Hall of Fame unveils Gordie Howe statue

1:07 | NHL
NHL's Most Iconic Moments, No. 5: Mr. Hockey’s Standing Ovation

TORONTO (AP) Gordie Howe is watching over the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Hall of Fame unveiled a nearly 8-foot statue of the late Detroit Red Wings star Friday. Howe's sons, Mark and Marty, participated in the ceremony.

''When I was young I'd see all these kids come up to Gordie Howe and he looked like this mountain of a man,'' said Mark Howe, a Hall of Fame inductee in 2011. ''Now people from of all walks of life are going to come here and see he was truly a mountain of a man.

''For Dad to be honored this way, he would never say it but, yeah, he deserved it. I think the Hall has done a wonderful thing and Marty and I are glad to be here and try to continue the legacy of Gordie Howe.''

• ‘It changed my life:’ Wayne Gretzky on the first time he met Gordie Howe

Howe died in June at 88.

The Hall of Fame also opened the NHL Centennial Exhibition, which pays tribute to the league's top players and moments from 1917 to 2017. Some featured items include Jacques Plante's first goalie mask, Howe's 1960 Hart Trophy plaque, Bobby Orr's knee brace, the stick and equipment Wayne Gretzky wore when he scored his 802nd career goal and the 1917 minute book that defined the birth of the NHL.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.