Does Bernie Nicholls Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Bernie Nicholls had one of the greatest individual seasons in the NHL by someone not named Gretzky. But looking at his career playing without Gretzky (or Dionne), his career is a lot less impressive. Does this point per game player belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Listen to us talk about Bernie Nicholls here:

Career:

  • NHL: 1981-99; 18 seasons, 15 quality
  • 475G, 734A for 1209P, -39 in 1127 games; 96.8 PS
  • Draft: In his draft year (1980), Nicholls, drafted 73rd overall, is
    • 2nd in Goals
    • 5th in Assists and Points
    • 7th in Games Played
  • Era: Of the 51 players to play in at least 1,000 games between 1981 and 1999, Nicholls is
    • 12th in Goals and GPG
    • 14th in Assists
    • 11th in APG and Points
    • 9th in PPG
    • 44th in Plus/Minus
    • 13th in Offensive Point Shares
    • 20th in Point Shares
  • 82-game average: 34G, 53A for 88P, -3
  • 3-year peak (1987-90): 82-game average of 51G, 72A for 124P, +8
  • No possession stats
  • Playoffs: 42G, 72A for 114P, -13 in 118 games
  • Adjusted: 417G, 651A for 1068P
  • Adjusted 82-game average: 30G, 47A for 78P
  • Nicholls is far from the Top 25 in any Adjusted per game stat
  • Traded twice in his prime and once a little after
    • Traded for Tomas Sandstrom and Tony Granato
    • Traded with Steve Rice and Louie DeBrusk for Mark Messier and futures (Jeff Beukeboom and David Shaw)
    • Traded for Zdeno Ciger and Kevin Todd

Accomplishments:

  • Top 5 Player (by PS) once (‘89)
  • Top 5 Offensive Player (by OPS) once (‘89), Top 10 twice (‘90)
  • Scored 70 goals once (1 of 8 players ever), 45 goals twice, 30 goals three times, 35 goals five times, 30 goals seven times, 25 goals nine times, 20 goals eleven times
  • Tallied 80 assists once, 70 assists twice, 60 assists three times, 50 assists five times, 40 assists ten times
  • Scored 150 points once (1 of only 5 players ever, Gretzky, Lemieux, Espo, Yzerman), 110 points twice, 100 points three times, 90 points five times, 80 points six times, 70 points eight times, 60 points ten times, 50 points twelve times
  • Top 5 in Goals once, Top 10 twice
  • Top 5 in GPG once
  • Top 5 in Assists once, Top 10 twice
  • Top 10 in APG twice
  • Top 5 in Points once, Top 10 twice
  • Top 5 in PPG once, Top 10 twice
  • 3 All Star Game appearances.

Great Teams:

  • Top 3 Forward (by points) on three Final Fours (‘92 Oilers, ‘94 Devils, ‘95 Blackhawks)
  • Role Player (by points) on one World Championship Runner Up (‘85 Canada)

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