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06-10-2005, 12:35 PM
Big Phil
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My knock on the Neely thing

First off I agree with Kharlamov being in there that's for sure, its long overdue. Now onto Neely. To me it was always touch and go with Neely. I wouldnt argue anyway with him personally, but only when people would kill their first born son in protest that he wasnt in is when it bothered me. He was a very good player. And was the kind of guy that you wanted on your team. But this is my knock against him being in the Hall.

First off, he had only 4 GOOD seasons with one of them being great ('94). He was second team all-star in '88, '90, '91 and '94. Not bad. He's slightly under a point per game, in regular and postseason. He never got more than 92 points. Only 91 another time. His next high was 75. I cant understand how it was a MUST for him to be in the Hall. He never had eye popping numbers, and was very good for too short of time. Mike Bossy, Bernie Parent both had spectacular short careers. Dickie Moore too. But Bossy had 8 postseason all-star selections, 4 Cups, one Conn Smythe Trophy and led the league in goals twice. Parent had two Vezinas, Two Cups and two Conn Smythes. Moore had six Cups and won two Art Ross Trophies (one with a broken wrist). You see in order to have your career cut short you need to have been a very dominant player who won a major award at least once or twice. Neely didnt.

Compare Neely to Cournoyer. Both were second team all-stars four times. But Cournoyer played 16 years, and won ten Cups in his career. He did stuff that made the selection commitee be impossible to neglect him. He was also on the ice for the most famous goal in Hockey history. Neely didnt do somehting so big like a couple of major awards or Cups that made people think "Yeah we have to let this guy in."

Yeah he's a sentimental choice. We all loved him. And we all hate Ulfie for what he did to him as well. And a guy like Cam played just the prototypical game. And in respnse to an earlier thread, he wasnt the best power forward of all time. Whoever mentioned that let me bring up a name: Gordie Howe. Or even Eric Lindros. Even Lindros and Forsberg have very borderline HOF credentials. And I would put them ahead of Neely. But Lindros has a Hart Trophy, was recognized at one time as the best player in the game. Forsberg had won an Art Ross, Hart and two Cups. They were at least dominant, dominant players at one time. But Neely was never even the best right winger in the game.

This may surprise people but Rick Martin has a better goals per game and points per gae average as Neely. But he never gets a sniff of the Hall. And I hate the argument that if Gilles, Federko and etc. are in then Neely is in. No way. That isnt enough credentials to get in. I think it should be truly reserved for the greats. Someone with four good seasons and an appearance on "Dumb and Dumber" is far from a Hall of Famer. Neely is a sentimental choice, his numbers and his longevity just arent quite there.

For the record, I think Rogie Vachon, Glenn Anderson and Sergei Makarov should have been in there before Neely. Sorry Sea Bass but I got to look at both sides.

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