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12-04-2012, 09:43 AM
Czech Your Math
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If you believe that career value or a similar measure is at least a substantial part of deciding whether to induct a player, then missing season(s) due to lockout certainly can and probably will affect some players' chances.

I don't think the players should be penalized for "participating" in the decision not to have an NHL season. To me, actually playing hockey and a collective decision to negotiate for better terms should be separated. I think players should receive credit for their most likely production during the lost season(s). The primary factors I would consider are:

1. The player's age and health
2. His NHL production in the seasons before and after the lockout(s)
3. The portion of season(s) he played in foreign league(s), the quality of those league(s), and his production in those league(s).

As far as specific players:

Thornton- He's basically a lock, despite some relatively mediocre playoffs. He just needs another ~3 decent seasons to make induction a cinch.

St. Louis- He has enough hardware and a long stretch of being an excellent player, despite being a late bloomer. Like Thornton, another ~3 decent seasons make him a cinch IMO.

Thomas- I disagree that there's no cake, it's just a small, dense cake. He doesn't necessarily need more hardware IMO, but another 2-3 solid seasons would make it a lot easier for him to be inducted. I believe the only other recent goalie to win a Vezina and start for a Cup-winner, yet not be inducted, is Barrasso.

Kiprusoff- Without the lockouts, he would probably end up a borderline candidate in CuJo territory. With the lockouts, his chances seem a lot slimmer.

Alfredsson- He should and I think he will be inducted.

Datsyuk/Elias/Hossa- These are the types of players who may end up as more borderline candidates, and whose records are hurt significantly by missing two lockout seasons. Going by past standards, they should all be inducted, but that doesn't mean they will be.

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