New Jersey Devils: Alexander Mogilny Needs To Be Inducted Into The Hall of Fame

15 Mar 2000: Alexander Moginly #89 of the New Jersey Devils moves after the puck during a game against of the Dallas Stars at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Stars defeated the Devils 3-2.
15 Mar 2000: Alexander Moginly #89 of the New Jersey Devils moves after the puck during a game against of the Dallas Stars at the Continental Airlines Arena in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Stars defeated the Devils 3-2. /

The New Jersey Devils recently celebrated the 20-year anniversary of their second Stanley Cup win on June 10. The team celebrated that achievement in front of the Prudential Center faithful in early February. While the Devils have not had success on the ice this season, much less most of the decade, the anniversary made us appreciate the 2000 Devils that much more for the fond memories that they gave.

Many former players could not make the anniversary celebration, but one glaring absence that stood out was Alexander Mogilny. Wandering minds might ponder why Mogilny was not present. Was it that he was off working as President of his KHL club Amur Khabarovsk, or was Mogilny still holding a grudge on how his NHL career uniquely ended after being exiled to the Albany River Rats?

Hearing all of our Cup heroes being called one by one, just think how great this team was headlined by Hall of Famers Martin Brodeur, Scott Stevens, and Scott Niedermayer…AND Alexander Mogilny.

Right?!? He has to be in the Hall of Fame as it would be mind boggling if he hadn’t been inducted. Then, as we double check with little doubt, and sure enough, he has not been inducted yet.

The question is how could a player of his pedigree not be inducted. He was one of the premier goal scorers of his era, possessed one of the most lethal shots in the NHL, and played an underrated two-way game that does not get talked about enough.

You want goals, well you got them! Mogilny scored 473 of them. He tied for the league lead with an astounding 76 goals in 1992-93 and 3rd in goals in 1995-96 with 55. In his second NHL campaign at the ripe age of 21, he scored 30 goals. Mogilny amassed eight 30+ goal seasons in total, including three seasons of 40 goals or more. You want points, well he’s got a lot of those as well. He averaged over a point per game in his storied career with 1,032 points, having eclipsed the 100 point plateau twice.

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Mogilny was a five-time All Star, having earned an appearance for all four teams that he represented in his career (Buffalo Sabres, Vancouver Canucks, New Jersey Devils, Toronto Maple Leafs) and also won the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy in 2003.

Mogilny is one of the best Russian born hockey players to ever lace up skates. He currently has the 3rd most goals and 4th most points of any Russian who has played at the NHL level.

Okay, those are some phenomenal individual accomplishments. Did his teams have success? Great question, why yes they did! Mogilny and the Soviet Union won the Gold Medal in the 1988 Winter Olympic Games. He also captured gold for the Soviets in both the World Junior Championships and World Championships in 1989. He also went on to two Stanley Cup Finals as a member of the New Jersey Devils, winning one in 2000.

What cannot be ignored is the impact he had on as a Russian hockey player. The story of how he boldly left the Soviet Union under their noses is a Hall of Fame story worthy of its own content. Short story, he left the Soviet Union for the United States when it was universally taboo to even consider doing such a thing, especially without the blessing of the Soviets. He conspired with the Buffalo Sabres brass to swiftly skip town after winning the 1989 World Championships in Stockholm, Sweden. Mogilny began a trend of Russians fulfilling their dreams of playing in the NHL.

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Mogilny became the first Russian NHL All Star, first Russian to ever captain an NHL club and to this day has scored more goals in a single season (76) than any other Russian.

It is preposterous that Alexander Mogilny is not in the Hall of Fame. He has accomplished so much internationally and at the NHL level while maintaining his status as a Russian icon. The man that was given the nickname ‘Alexander the Great’ deserves his long-overdue induction into hockey greatness.