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Neely in the Hall?

View Poll Results: Should Neely be a Hall of Famer?
Yes 50 70.42%
No 21 29.58%
Voters: 71. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
06-01-2005, 06:39 PM
  #1
Fletch
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Neely in the Hall?

Yay or Nay?

Reason why I'm asking is he's up for consideration this year, along with Beezer, Vernon, Glenn Anderson, Steve Larmer, Tocchet, Ciccarelli, Verbeek and Kevin Stevens, among others. Buccigross argues he should be in, saying 'if' it weren't for a questionable knee-on-knee injury, his numbers would've looked a heck of a lot better and he would've played longer. I'm not decided, as it's tough to rate someone who didn't really have a full career (he scored under 400 goals in his career and played more than 50 games 7 times in his career (of course one season he scored 50 goals in 49 games, which was absolutely incredible). It's almost like Don Mattingly...without those back injuries, who knows what...

I'm inclined to say yes. He was a consistent player throughout his 700 or so game career. It's not a full career, but it's not 100 games. He played a tough game, was a character guy and decent playoff performer, and did score 398 goals.

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06-01-2005, 06:41 PM
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Barnaby
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Same thing with Mattingly... IF he didn't have the injuries he probably would have been a lock HOFer, but he did and those are his numbers. Tough decision, he's certainly more deserving then others on that list...

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06-01-2005, 07:09 PM
  #3
Fletch
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Even Mattingly by baseball standards...

.300+ hittter, 1.1K RBI, 1K runs, 2K hits, 400+ doubles, 200+ Hrs, 9-time gold glove, 6X allstar. Even in a shortened career, them some good numbers.

I don't like extrapolating, but perhaps sometimes you need to look at the career they did have, assuming they did play X games. Is a hockey player that scores 500 goals in 18 healthy seasons necessarily better than one who scored 400 goals in 10 healthy seasons (or more deserving for that matter)? Of course if we're talking about 4 seasons and 200 goals, perhaps not, except under special circumstances.

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06-01-2005, 07:11 PM
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Does Bure deserve to get in the HoF..i say yes, Neely should be in as well. They dominated the sport in the time in the NHL, because of injuries that shouldn't exclude them in the HoF (Unless they only played like 2 seasons)

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06-01-2005, 07:28 PM
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Any way you slice it....

Bure did have 5 50-goal seasons and four of his five playoff appearances in his career were quite productive. If Cam gets in, it would be tough keeping Pavel out. Cam played on better teams and thus more playoff games, but not a significant amount.

My one reservation about Neely was would it open the flood gates for guys like Mogilny, who has more than 1,000 points, and likely will have 500 goals, but will play in about games more. There's a fine line, and to a certain extent I'm going based on points per game, or goals per game. I think the selection is an art rather than a science. I would think Neely gets in before Bure, even though Bure's numbers are equally, if not more, impressive. Just a gut feel.

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06-01-2005, 11:01 PM
  #6
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Exceptionally tough call. At his best, he was without question the best winger in the game. He scored against you, and he punished you. People remember his goals, but he was also an awesome physical presence. Tkachuk, Leclair, Shanahan and others have been labeled "power forwards", but Cam was better than all of them.

Unfortunately, injuries caused him to miss a ton of time, and even when he did play, he was often nowhere near 100%. So, he doesn't have the kind of career totals that other HOFers might.

I was always a fan of his, and I never took much of a liking to Ulfie as a Ranger as a result. However, when it comes to the Hall, I would lean towards keeping him out only because it should be about what guys did, not based on ifs. Once you start down that road, you'd be letting all kinds of people in because they would have been more productive if they had stayed healthy, if they had played on better teams, if they had been played with different linemates, if they had been better-coached, etc. The Hall should be an exclusive club.

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06-02-2005, 08:06 AM
  #7
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Agreed Laches...

but what's wrong with 398 goals in 750 or so games? 50 goals in 49 games. Is the only way a guy can have an 8-10 year career and make it to the Hall is to have super-gaudy seasons? I'm still a little torn, but like I've said, it's not a 3-4 year career (or under 300 games). It's 700+ games in which he excelled. I dunno, but I've been leaning towards basing the induction on the career one had, not the seasons it didn't play.

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06-02-2005, 08:21 AM
  #8
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Close, but no cigar for me.

IMO he needed two or three more real good seasons. If you have a shortened career, you have to be ultra special (Orr, Koufax, etc.)

Neely was very very good (not great), when healthy, but only topped 80 points twice, during the higest scoring era in the NHL.

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06-02-2005, 09:27 AM
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laches
Tkachuk, Leclair, Shanahan and others have been labeled "power forwards", but Cam was better than all of them.

Unfortunately, injuries caused him to miss a ton of time, and even when he did play, he was often nowhere near 100%. So, he doesn't have the kind of career totals that other HOFers might.
Agreed on both points. Part of being a HOFer is the ability to play. As John points out, unless your healthy years are so exceptional (a la Sandy Koufax, whose 6 healthy years are the best that baseball has ever or will ever see), then you belong on the outside looking in. Bure is in the same boat.

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06-02-2005, 09:31 AM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
Close, but no cigar for me.

IMO he needed two or three more real good seasons. If you have a shortened career, you have to be ultra special (Orr, Koufax, etc.)

Neely was very very good (not great), when healthy, but only topped 80 points twice, during the higest scoring era in the NHL.
I agree with John, here.

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06-02-2005, 10:09 AM
  #11
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In recent years, more and more players are having shortened careers. Allowing Neely in opens the doors for all other players with shortened careers. What about LaFontaine? What about Lindros, when he does come up? In my opinion, the Hall of Fame is about sustained excellence, not just excellence. You cannot simply be a flash-in-the-pan star for 4 years and get in. This is not to say that Neely was this by any means; he was a great player who had a career shortened by injuries. And I agree that in order to get into the HoF with a shortened career, you must be exceptional. I say no go for Neely.

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06-02-2005, 10:19 AM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njranger21
In recent years, more and more players are having shortened careers. Allowing Neely in opens the doors for all other players with shortened careers. What about LaFontaine? What about Lindros, when he does come up? In my opinion, the Hall of Fame is about sustained excellence, not just excellence. You cannot simply be a flash-in-the-pan star for 4 years and get in. This is not to say that Neely was this by any means; he was a great player who had a career shortened by injuries. And I agree that in order to get into the HoF with a shortened career, you must be exceptional. I say no go for Neely.
At this point I wouldn't put Lindros in the HoF either, but he had a far better career than Neely. There was a time when Lindros was the best player on the planet, and 5-7 years where he was a top 5 player.

Neely was never a top 5 player.

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06-02-2005, 12:05 PM
  #13
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I voted yes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch
Yay or Nay?

Reason why I'm asking is he's up for consideration this year, along with Beezer, Vernon, Glenn Anderson, Steve Larmer, Tocchet, Ciccarelli, Verbeek and Kevin Stevens, among others. Buccigross argues he should be in, saying 'if' it weren't for a questionable knee-on-knee injury, his numbers would've looked a heck of a lot better and he would've played longer. I'm not decided, as it's tough to rate someone who didn't really have a full career (he scored under 400 goals in his career and played more than 50 games 7 times in his career (of course one season he scored 50 goals in 49 games, which was absolutely incredible). It's almost like Don Mattingly...without those back injuries, who knows what...

I'm inclined to say yes. He was a consistent player throughout his 700 or so game career. It's not a full career, but it's not 100 games. He played a tough game, was a character guy and decent playoff performer, and did score 398 goals.
I look more to whether or not the player was a player at his position. Did they dominate their position. Neely made the word "power forward" come into the hockey vocabulary. Larmer, Anderson and Tocchet deserve to be in also.
Anderson was a pain to play against, plus he holds the record for most GWgoals.
Larmer was a solid, steady player. Beezer I think doesn't quite make the grade, same with Verbeek and Stevens. Ciccarelli should be in. He played on some really crappy teams, and I think stayed around a little too long and therefore people have a tendency to discount or over look what he did in his career. Just my 2 cents.

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06-02-2005, 12:47 PM
  #14
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I voted yes. Neely was before my time as a hockey fan, so I really rely on others' opinions of him (grain of salt time). I've read often about how he was a new type of hockey player, the 'power forward' followed by guys like Lindros and Bertuzzi.

If this is true, and he changed the way a forward can play, then I think he deserves to be in the hall.

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06-02-2005, 12:52 PM
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 007
I voted yes. Neely was before my time as a hockey fan, so I really rely on others' opinions of him (grain of salt time). I've read often about how he was a new type of hockey player, the 'power forward' followed by guys like Lindros and Bertuzzi.

If this is true, and he changed the way a forward can play, then I think he deserves to be in the hall.
Neely was not the first power forward.

Gordie Howe, Clark Gillies, etc were around long before Neely. Rick Tocchet began the same year.

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06-02-2005, 12:55 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
Close, but no cigar for me.

IMO he needed two or three more real good seasons. If you have a shortened career, you have to be ultra special (Orr, Koufax, etc.)

Neely was very very good (not great), when healthy, but only topped 80 points twice, during the higest scoring era in the NHL.
After thinking more about it I totally agree with you. Bottom line is what he actually did, not what he would have or could have done. Same as Mattingly, if he never gets injured, then he skips into the HOF on the first ballot... unfortunately that wasn't the case...

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06-02-2005, 03:10 PM
  #17
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The word power forward

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
Neely was not the first power forward.

Gordie Howe, Clark Gillies, etc were around long before Neely. Rick Tocchet began the same year.
was never used to describe Gordie Howe. Howe was so much more than just a big (for his time) forward. He was a leading scorer and more. While Neely certainly scored goals his game was not as all round as Howe's. I think that is why Howe has to be classified as something more than a power forward. Gillies on the otherhand was not what I would consider to be a power forward. He was so laid back at times you had to see if he had a pulse.
Neely's style was what generated the phrase "power forward" in today's need to have handle, phrase.

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06-02-2005, 03:41 PM
  #18
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I do agree Barnaby..

but the question is, is what he did enough? Meaning, 400 goals in and of itself may not be enough, but if it was done in 10 seasons is it enough? 1000 points may not be enough, but if it was done in 10 seasons, and not 18, it may be. It's like saying Mike Bossy was a more prolific goal scorer than Mike Gartner. Gartner had about 150 more goals, but played in about 8 more seasons. I'm not saying that had Bossy stayed healthy he'd have more goals than Gartner, I'm saying that his 10 seasons were enough for me to base my decision.

Like I had said...a guy can play 18 good, consistent seasons and make it to the Hall. Can a guy play 10 very good, consistent seasons and make it to the Hall. Where is the cutoff?

As with Mattingly...one can argue that a .300+ average, 1.1K RBIs, 1K runs, 450 doubles, 200 HRs, a low K/AB ratio and 9-time goal glove winner should at some point get in.

I did vote for Neely, but have been on the fence even when I voted because of the floodgates I may cause. In the end the decision isn't a science (i.e., 400 goals in a career and you're in); it's a judgment call. And honestly, it's not clear-cut and it's not an easy call.

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06-02-2005, 03:51 PM
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletch
but the question is, is what he did enough? Meaning, 400 goals in and of itself may not be enough, but if it was done in 10 seasons is it enough? 1000 points may not be enough, but if it was done in 10 seasons, and not 18, it may be. It's like saying Mike Bossy was a more prolific goal scorer than Mike Gartner. Gartner had about 150 more goals, but played in about 8 more seasons. I'm not saying that had Bossy stayed healthy he'd have more goals than Gartner, I'm saying that his 10 seasons were enough for me to base my decision.

Like I had said...a guy can play 18 good, consistent seasons and make it to the Hall. Can a guy play 10 very good, consistent seasons and make it to the Hall. Where is the cutoff?

As with Mattingly...one can argue that a .300+ average, 1.1K RBIs, 1K runs, 450 doubles, 200 HRs, a low K/AB ratio and 9-time goal glove winner should at some point get in.

I did vote for Neely, but have been on the fence even when I voted because of the floodgates I may cause. In the end the decision isn't a science (i.e., 400 goals in a career and you're in); it's a judgment call. And honestly, it's not clear-cut and it's not an easy call.
I agree, it's not clear cut. I just don't believe Neely was at such an elite level that the time he played was enough. Had he played 5 more healthy season, then sure probably. Did he do enough in the end? I think he was a tad short. He wasn't at the top for long enough IMO.

As for Mattingly.. he's borderline as well but probably wont get in. I just meant that had he been healthy there aren't too many people that could say he wouldn't have easily made the HOF. He was elite for a time, but due to health just couldn't keep it up.

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06-02-2005, 06:52 PM
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
At this point I wouldn't put Lindros in the HoF either, but he had a far better career than Neely. There was a time when Lindros was the best player on the planet, and 5-7 years where he was a top 5 player.

Neely was never a top 5 player.
I would take exception to that, John. Neely at his best was the best winger in the game. You could make a pretty persuasive argument that he was a top 5 players. And Lindros being the best player on the planet?! When? Better than Bourque? Better than Hasek? Better than Mario Lemieux? Better than Forsberg?

I think ranking Lindros number 1, or even in the top 5, is open to debate. You could make arguments for it, but no way is that clear cut.

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06-02-2005, 07:03 PM
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Flyers Fan
At this point I wouldn't put Lindros in the HoF either, but he had a far better career than Neely. There was a time when Lindros was the best player on the planet, and 5-7 years where he was a top 5 player.

Neely was never a top 5 player.
And on Lindros in the hall, that's also a tough call. The thing is that in the last 20 years, there have been quite a number of excellent centers in the NHL. You let Lindros in, there are a lot of guys you'd have a hard time arguing against. Consider the following:

Eric Lindros
GP-678 G-356 A-461 P-817
1 Hart
1 Pearson

Steve Yzerman
GP-1453 G-678 A-1043 P-1721
1 Pearson
1 Conn Smythe
1 Selke

Ron Francis
GP-1731 G-549 A-1249 GP-1798
3 Lady Byng
1 Selke

Peter Forsberg
GP-580 G-216 A-525 P-741
1 Calder
1 Ross
1 Hart

Sergei Fedorov
GP-988 G-431 A-588 P-1019
1 Hart
1 Pearson
2 Selke

Joe Sakic
GP-1155 G-542 A-860 P-1402
1 Hart
1 Pearson
1 Lady Byng
1 Conn Smythe

To me, Lindros may be the least deserving of that bunch (certainly so if Forsberg comes back with a few more good seasons) even though a good argument could be made for him. And what about guys like Doug Gilmour, Mike Modano, Mats Sundin, Joe Nieuwendyk?

It's a tough call. You have this in every sport. The guy with 5 great years versus the guy with 15 not-quite-as-great years. At least it makes for something to talk about during the lockout.

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06-02-2005, 07:08 PM
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laches
I would take exception to that, John. Neely at his best was the best winger in the game. You could make a pretty persuasive argument that he was a top 5 players. And Lindros being the best player on the planet?! When? Better than Bourque? Better than Hasek? Better than Mario Lemieux? Better than Forsberg?

I think ranking Lindros number 1, or even in the top 5, is open to debate. You could make arguments for it, but no way is that clear cut.
I don't believe Neely was ever the best winger in a given year. He was NEVER voted to the 1st all-star team (4 times a 2nd selection).

Neely's three best seasons were 89-90, 90-91, and 93-94. His goal/point totals were 55/92, 51/91 and 50/74.

During those years here are the numbers put up by Brett Hull 72/113, 86/131, and 57/97.

During the last of those three years 5 wingers outscored him. Now i understand Neely brings more than goals/ponts, but Hull was certainly a better player during those years.

================================================

I find it hard to believe that if you watched hockey during the mid/late 90's that you'd argue about Lindros being a top 5 player.

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06-02-2005, 07:09 PM
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laches
And on Lindros in the hall, that's also a tough call. The thing is that in the last 20 years, there have been quite a number of excellent centers in the NHL. You let Lindros in, there are a lot of guys you'd have a hard time arguing against.
I wouldn't put Lindros in the HHoF, but he was a far better player than Neely.

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06-02-2005, 07:25 PM
  #24
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Lindros was awesome for awhile... He certainly was top 5 for a few years IMHO

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06-02-2005, 11:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLANTARANGER
was never used to describe Gordie Howe. Howe was so much more than just a big (for his time) forward. He was a leading scorer and more. While Neely certainly scored goals his game was not as all round as Howe's. I think that is why Howe has to be classified as something more than a power forward. Gillies on the otherhand was not what I would consider to be a power forward. He was so laid back at times you had to see if he had a pulse.
Neely's style was what generated the phrase "power forward" in today's need to have handle, phrase.
You and John both have very good points. This is what I meant by grain of salt! Gordie Howe footage, even some Gillies, I've seen. I really wish that I could see an old Bruins game or even some Neely highlights, just to get an idea of what he looked like.

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