Tim Horton is now famous for Tim Horton’s than he is for hockey. But, while he was alive, he was reputed to be the strongest player in the league. He won four Stanley Cups (leading the Leafs in points one layoff) and is one of the greatest D in Leafs history.
But is also a bit of a proto Brad Park: he was a runner up in Norris trophy voting twice, with four other Top 4 finishes, but never won the award. He was also a minus on a couple of the Cup winning teams he played for.
So, does Tim Horton belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?
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Andy Bathgate won the Hart (though we don’t agree) and he was arguably the 2nd best regular season RW of his era (if you don’t count the years he overlapped with Richard).
But his playoff numbers are not great and the only Cup he won he had quite a diminished role.
So, does Andy Bathgate belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?
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Harry Howell was the career leader in Games Played by a D at his departure for the WHA. And he won the Norris, of course. And he made 1st All Star Team.
But that’s it. That’s his whole Hall of Fame case.
So, does Harry Howell really belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?
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Gump Worsley spent half his career playing for bad teams.
But then he got traded to the Habs, won some Vezinas, and could have won at least one Conn Smythe if the votes had gone differently.
The big question about Worsley is which part of his career should we take seriously: the regular season goalie without a winning record or the goalie who was among the best in the world for a time?
Listen to us talk about Gump Worsley’s Hall of Fame case here:
Continue reading “Does Lorne “Gump” Worsley Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?”
Lynn Patrick is a member of one of the most important hockey dynasties in the sports’ history. He is the son of Lester Patrick, the nephew of Frank Patrick, and the father of Craig Patrick, Hall of Famers all.
But, he’s one of those players with “one good year.” (Well, it was a great year.) His career is only really impressive in relation to what came before it, not what came after. The Hall waited until he died to induct him.
Listen to us talk about Lynn Patrick’s case for the Hall of Fame here:
Continue reading “Does Lynn Patrick Belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?”
Harry Lumley belongs in the Hockey Hall of Fame because he was the All Time Wins Leader at his retirement. But, was he really that good?
Most of his career, the league didn’t track shots. Once, they did, Lumley’s numbers started not looking so good (though he was getting old).
We discuss his career here:
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Allan Stanley played a really long time, won a bunch of Stanley Cups and was briefly considered one of the best D in the NHL.
But his name doesn’t come up very often in discussions of great D of the past.
So, does Allan Stanley belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame? Has he been unjustly forgotten?
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Rod Gilbert is certainly someone deserving of the title “Mr. Ranger.” Along with Brian Leetch and Henrik Lundqvist, he has a claim to the title of Greatest New York Ranger of All Time (certainly if length of career with the franchise is taken into account).
But he was never one of the best players in the league during the regular season and his playoff numbers are not great.
So the question is, is his importance to the Rangers franchise and his compelling story of overcoming injury enough to put him in the Hall?
Listen to us talk about Rod Gilbert’s Hall of Fame case here:
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Why is it that we (our generation anyway) have trouble thinking of Esposito as one of the greatest hockey players of all time? Is it because he was on the same team as Bobby Orr, whose legend has endured far better? Is it because of Esposito’s extraordinarily unathletic physique? Is it because everything he did has since been done multiple times by multiple players so those records feel less important?
We have no idea, but Espo was the most dominant offensive player between Howe and Gretzky. (We read somewhere that Lafleur was the most dominant offensive player between Howe and Gretzky, but we don’t see evidence to back that up.)
Sure, Espo benefited from playing more games per season in the newly expanded league (someone was going to set records) and, yes, he benefited from playing with the Greatest of All Time, but lesser players wouldn’t have excelled the way he did, over such a long period of time.
Listen to us talk about Esposito here:
Continue reading “Is Phil Esposito one of the Greatest Centres of All Time?”
By regular season numbers, Jean Ratelle was one of the best forwards of his era. And, had he been healthy in his best season, he might have competed for the scoring title. (His peers awarded him with the Pearson for that.)
However, his playoff numbers are noticeably worse. And, of course, he never won a Cup.
So, how great was Jean Ratelle? Is he one of the greats of his era or does his longevity make him look better than he was? Listen to us discuss Ratelle’s Hall of Fame case here:
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