Born: Simcoe, Ont.
DOB: Dec. 10, 1969 (32). Height: 6'4, Weight: 227 pounds. Shoots: Right. NHL team: Colorado Avalanche.
International history: Won world championship gold medals in both 1994 and 1997 and named best defenceman in latter tournament. Played for 1998 Olympic team and named tournament's top defenceman. Won silver medals in 1996 World Cup and 1991 world championships.
What he brings: A strong two-way package. Blake is one of the most accomplished big men in the game, an effective offensive player, with the ability to anchor a power play, but is also an intimidator on the blueline, with the ability to punish forwards in front of the net and catch them with heavy body checks in open ice.
Career highlights: Won 2001 Stanley Cup with Colorado. Played in four NHL All-Star Games (2001, 2000, 1999, 1994). The 1998 James Norris Trophy winner as the NHL's best defenceman. Named to the first all-star team in 1998 and second all-star team in 2000. Led NHL defencemen in goals (23) in 97-98.