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AHL names four to Hall of Fame

Billy Dea, Bryan Helmer and Rob Murray, and executive Doug Yingst to be inducted on Jan. 30, 2017 @NHL

Former players Billy Dea, Bryan Helmer and Rob Murray, and executive Doug Yingst will be inducted into the American Hockey League Hall of Fame at an awards ceremony in Allentown, Pa., on Jan. 30, 2017.

Dea, a forward, spent 11 of his 19 seasons in professional hockey playing in the AHL. He set an AHL record by playing 548 straight games for the Buffalo Bisons from Oct. 8, 1958, through Feb. 12, 1966. Dea also played 397 games in the NHL with the New York Rangers, Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks.

Helmer set career records for AHL defensemen in assists (435) and points (564) during 20 seasons with Albany, Worcester, Manitoba, Springfield, Grand Rapids, San Antonio, Hershey and Oklahoma City. He made seven trips to the conference finals and won three Calder Cup championships. He also played 146 games with the Phoenix Coyotes, St. Louis Blues, Vancouver Canucks and Washington Capitals.

Murray played 15 seasons in the AHL and ranks third in league history with 2,940 penalty minutes in 1,018 games. He served as captain in Moncton, Springfield, Hamilton and Philadelphia. Murray also played in 107 NHL games with the Washington Capitals, Winnipeg Jets and Phoenix Coyotes.

Yingst spent 34 years as an executive with the Hershey Bears. Hired as director of sales and promotion in 1982, Yingst won the AHL Ken McKenzie Award for outstanding promotion in 1987-88 when Hershey won the Calder Cup. He was promoted to assistant general manager in 1988 and added the role of director of hockey operations in 1990. He won four Calder Cup titles in eight trips to the finals, tied for the most by anyone in AHL history.

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