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Joe Nieuwendyk celebrating with the Stanley Cup in 2003 with the Devils. Source: Hockey Hall of Fame

The Hockey Hall of Fame. Get in, and it means all of the great work you have done in your career is being honored, and you are one of the greatest to ever be involved in the sport of hockey. Atleast, that is what it used to mean. Never before has the Hall of Fame Committee gone so wrong. It was not their mistake in terms of who got in. For the first time ever, a women’s category was made. Cammi Granato and Angela James were two of the first great women hockey superstars, and did great things for the sport. Dino Ciccarelli was a four time all star and finished his career with 1200 points and 608 points. Those statistics alone are probably good enough for the Hall. However, it is who didn’t get into the Hall that was the real shock.

The Committee is made up of some of the greatest minds in hockey. This includes Serge Savard, Peter Statsny, Mike Gartner, and Scotty Bowman, among others.  However, the committee made some major mistakes today by excluding some of hockey’s best, such as players like ex Devils Joe Nieuwendyk and Doug Gilmour, and former Devils coach Pat Burns

I’ll start with the players category.

Now, don’t get me wrong, Ciccarelli was a great player. 1200 points is a ridiculously high number and shows his dedication, and love for the sport of hockey. However, he did not win any major awards. No Hart Memorial, no Conn Smythe, and no Stanley Cup. He only managed more than 20 points in the playoffs one time. He was a great player, but not Hall great in my opinion. I think getting into the Hall of Fame doesn’t mean that you had one or just a couple of good seasons. It doesn’t mean you led your team to the playoffs and collapsed. That is why Eric Lindros will never make it into the Hall. While Ciccarelli was great, and had a great career, his career wasn’t Hall great. He never led his team to the Cup, and he never won an MVP, nor any award for the matter. That being said, I think his 1200 points IS good enough to get in. But their are better choices.

Joe Nieuwendyk  had a great career. He racked up 564 goals and 1126 points in his career. That is just a bit lower than Ciccarelli’s goals and points. However, unlike Ciccarelli, Joe was a true winner. He won the Calder Award, a Gold Medal in 2002, the Conn Smythe, and three Stanley Cups, including one in 2003 with the New Jersey Devils. Can the committee in any way defend their choice when you put their stats and awards back to back. Nieuwendyk is a leader, clutch, and most of all, a winner. Ciccarelli never won anything really. Nieuwendyk had.

Doug Gilmour was a point scoring machine. He had an impressive 450 goals, and an even more impressive 1414 points. He was also a great two way forward, winning the Frank J. Selke Award for the best defensive offense man. He set three Maple Leafs records, was a captain, and a Cup winner. More points, more records, more awards, and more cups than Ciccarelli. Something seems wrong to me here.

The Committee was not wrong inducting Ciccarelli. He was a great player in his career. However, for him to get in, but for Nieuwendyk and Gilmour to not get in, when their were still three spots left available, is ridiculous, and a vice against the great careers of these two great players.

Tomorrow, I will talk about possibly the greatest mistake the Committee made: Not inducting coach Pat Burns in the Builders Category.

If you have any opinions, questions, or ideas, please comment or email me at [email protected]

Thank you for reading

Tags: Cammi Granato Dino Ciccarelli Doug Gilmore Hockey Hall Of Fame Joe Nieuwendyk Pat Burns

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